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Printed by T. and A. CONSTABLE, Printers to His Majesty 







(Elected 12th November 1907.) 

Professor JAMES GEIKIE, D.C.L., LL.D., F.R.S. 


His Grace The Doke of Hamilton. 

His Grace The Duke of Montrose, K.T. 

Tlie Most Hon. The Marquess of Twkeddalk, K.T. 

The Most Hon. The Marquess of Linlithgow, K.T., 

The Right Hon. The Earl of Dalkeith. 
The Right Hon. The Earl of Crawford and 

BAiCAKRES, K.T., LL.D., F.R.S., P.R.A.S. 
The Right Hon. The Earl of Wemyss and March, 

The Right Hon. The Earl of Aberdeen, K.T., 

G.C.M.G., LL.D. 
The Right Hon. The Earl of Stair. 
The Right Hon. The Earl of Rosebery, K.G., K.T., 

D.C.L., LL.D., F.R.S., P.S.A. 

The Right Hon. The Earl of Camperdown, LL.D. 

The Right Hon. Lord Forbes. 

The Right Hon. Lord Saltoun. 

The Right Hon. Lord Sempill. 

The Right Hon. Lord Elphinstone. 

The Right Hon. Lord Balfour of Burlbioh, K.T., 

The Right Hon. Lord Reay, G.G.S.L, G.C.LE., D.O.L., 

LL.D., P.B.A. 
Colonel The Right Hon. Lord Playfair, C.V.O., R.A. 
The Right Hon. Lord Overtoun. 
The Right Hon. Lord Kinnear, LL.D. 
The Hon. Lord Stormonth Darling, LL.D. 
The Hon. Lord Guthrie. 
Sir Donald Currie, G.C.M.G., LL.D. 
Sir John Murray, K. C. B. , D. Sc. , Ph.D. , LL. D. , F. R. S. 

Chairmen of Centres. 

Glasgmv . . Paul Rottenburg, LL.D. 

Dundee . . I. Julius Weinberg, J.P., F.R.G.S. 

Aberdeen . . William Smith. 

Henry A. R. Chancellor. 

James J. Dobbie, M.A., D.Sc, F.R.S, 

Captain Alan Foster. 

John Geddie, F.R.G.S. 

A. P. Laurie, M.A., D.Sc, F.R.S.E. 

Lieut. E. H. Shackleton, M.V.O. 

W. F. G. Anderson, Glasgow. 

J. Horne, LL.D., F.R.S. 

John Clarke, M.A., Aberdeen. 

H. B. FiNLAY. 

William B. Wilson, W.S. 

John Gunn, M.A., D.Sc. 

Lieut. -Colonel F. Bailey. 

Kenneth Sanderson, W.S. 

Sir James A. Russell, LL.D. 

H. M. Cadell, B.Sc. 

Robert Fullerton, M.D., Glasgow. 

Alexander Mackay, C.A., Dundee. 

Harry W. Smith, W.S., F.R.S.6.S. 

David Christison, M.D., LL.D. 

George Smith, M.A. 

George Mackenzie Brown. 

Charles E. Price, M.P. 

Hon. John Abercromby. 

Ordinary Members of Council. 

W. G. Burn-Murdoch. 

Ebenezer Duncan, M. D., Glasgow. 

A. E. Maylard, B.Sc, Glasgow. 

D. F. Lowe, M.A., LL.D. 

George Smith, LL.D., CLE. 

W. B. Blaikie, F.R.S.E. 

Captain D. Livingstone Bruce. 

Colonel T. Cadell, V.C, C.B. 

Colonel Wardlaw Ramsay. 

John Kerr, LL.D. 

Robert S. Allan, Glasgow. 

A. Crosbie Turner, Glasgow. 

A. B. Gilroy. 

Sir George W. Baxter, LL.D., Dundee. 

The Right Hon. James P. Gibson, Lord Provost 

OF Edinburgh. 
Professor Alex. Darroch, M.A. 
Professor T. Hudson Beare, B.A., B.Sc, M.I.C.B. 
W. S. Bruce, LL.D. 
The Hon. Sir William Bilsland, Bart., Lord Provost 

of Glasgow. 
R. B. Don, Dundee. 
Robert Sinclair, M.D., Dundee. 
Professor J. Arthur Thomson, M.A., Abei-deen. 

CrusUea— James Currie, M.A., F.R.S.E. ; James R. 
Reid, CLE. ; F. Grant Ooilvie.CB., M.A., B.Sc ; 
William C Smith, K.C, M.A. ; and the Honorary 
Treasurers, ex officio. 
Sonorarg STreassutEtB— James Currie, M.A., F.R.S.E., 
Edinburgh; Robert Gourlay, LL.D., Bank of 
Scotland, Glasgow, 
i^onorarp Stcrttartea — Ralph Richardson, W.S., 
F.R.S.E. ; John George Bartholomew, F.R.S.E. 
Glasgow : A. Crosbie Turner, 65 Bath Street. 
Dundee : David Wylie, 38 Reform Street. 
Aberdeen : R. W. K. Bain, 375 Union Street. 

ionorarg lEUitor— Professor James Geikik, D.C.L., 
LL.D., F.R.S. 

l^onorarg ILibrarian— J. 

Burgess, CLE., LL.D., 

l^onorarg iWap=Cutator— Colonel James Sconce. 

auSitorg— Macandrew and Blaie, C.A. 

Secrctarg anS STreaaurer— Major W. Lachlan Fobbbb 
Gate R.F.). 

ffilJitor— Marion I. Newbigin, D.Sc. 

ffijjuf CUrft— George Walker. 





It is provided by Chapter i. § iv. of the Constitution and Laws 
of the Koyal Scottish Geographical Society, that — 

" The Ordinary Members shall he those who are approved by the 
Council, and tvho iiay the ordinary annual sitbscrijjtion, or a com- 
position for life-membership." 

The Annual Subscription is One Guinea, and is payable in 
advance at the commencement of each Session. A Member may 
compound for Life-Membership by payment as follows, viz. : — 
When under ten years' standing, £20 ; when over ten and under 
twenty years, £15; when over twenty and under 30 years, £10; 
when over thirty years' standing, £5, 

The Official Year, or Session, of the Society is from November 1st 
to October 31st. New Members are required to pay the Subscrip- 
tion for the Session in which they join the Society, at whatever 
period, and they are entitled to receive the ordinary publications 
of that Session. Resignations, to take effect, must be lodged with 
the Secretary before the commencement of a new Session. 

The privileges of Membership include admission (with one Guest) 
to the Ordinary monthly Meetings of the Society, and the use of the 
Library and ]\Iap-Koom. Non-resident Members may borrow books 
from the Library, but they must defray the cost of transit both ways. 
Each Member is entitled to receive, free by post, the Scottish Geo- 
graphical Magazine, which is published monthly by the Society. 

Teacher Associate Membershii'. — The Eoyal Scottish Geogra- 
phical Society, at a Meeting held in the Society's Rooms on the 
8th November 1906, resolved that, with the object of helping to 
promote the teaching of Geography in Schools, " Teacher Associates " 
(including Lady Teachers) be admitted to certain privileges of the 
Society at a reduced Subscription of Half-a-Guinea, payable in 
advance at the commencement of each Session, 

The privileges of Associate Membership include one ticket of 
admission (not transferable, and admitting only one) to the Ordinary 
^Meetings of the Society, the use of the Society's Kooms, and the 
right to borrow one volume from the Library. Non-resident Associate 
Members may borrow books from the Library, but they must defray 
the cost of transit both ways. Each Associate Member is entitled 
to receive, free by post, the Scottish Geographical Magazine, which is 
published monthly by the Society. 

Branches of the Society have been established in Glasgow, 
Dundee, and Aberdeen, where periodical Meetings are held. 


VOL. XXIII: 1907. 


Ger graphical Ideal?. By Sir George Taubman Goldie, F.E.S., D.C.L., 

LL.D., President of the Royal Geographical Society, 

Geographical Photography. By John Thomson, . 

The Dead Heart of Australia : A Review, . 

The Volcanoes of Mexico, .... 

Western Tibet and the British Borderland, 

The Pagan Races of the Malay Peninsula, . 

Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, 

Geographical Notes, ..... 

The Mungo Park Centenary — Report of the Malta Fever Commission — 
The Stein Expedition to Eastern Turkestan — The French ArchEeological 
Expedition to Central Asia — Journey to Western Tibet— The Result of the 
Foureau-Lamy Mission — New Turco-Egyptian Frontier — The San Francisco 
Earthquake and the Bogoslof Islands — The Geography of Alaska — The 
"World's Production of Rubber— The Industrial Situation in the Southern 
United States. 

Educational, ......... 

New Books, . . . . . . . . . 

Books received, ........ 

{Portrait, Map, and Illustrations.) 





H.S.H. The Prince of Monaco, ..... 

The Niger Basin and Mungo Park. By Sir Harry H. Johnston, G.C.M.G. 


On the Frontier of the Western Shire, British Central Africa. By H 

Cravpford Angus, ...... 

The Upper Ituri. By J. Penman Browne, M.E., . 
Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, 





Geographical Notes, ........ 

Errata — Expedition to Bui niah— Ruwtnzoii — Earthquake in Jamaica— 
^^eteorology in the Antarctic— The Peary Arctic Expedition— The Amundsen 
Polar Expedition— New Arctic Expedition— The Duke of Orleans' Green- 
land Expedition— Scottish National Antarctic Expedition— Tlie Italian 
Geographical Congress of 1907— The Geographical Association— Ninth 
International Geographical Congress. 


New Books, ......... 

Books received, ........ 

(Portrait, Ma2)s, and Illustrations.) 




Meteorological Researches in the High Atmosphere. By H.S.H. The 

Prince of Monaco, . . . . .113 

The Transition of British Africa. By Major A. St. H. Gibbons, F.R.G.S., 122 

Prince Charles Foreland. By William S. Bruce, F.R.S.E., . . 141 

Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, . . 156 

Geographical Notes, . . . . . . . .157 

Professor Sir William Ramsay, D.C.L., LL.D., Litt.D.— The Flora of an 
Island— The Survey of Lake Balaton— Dr. Sven Hedin's Expedition — The 
Alexander-Gosling Expedition — Scottish National Antarctic Expedition — 
New Antarctic Expedition — The Anglo-American Polar Expedition — 
Personal— Geographical Congresses. 

Educational, ......... 161 

New Maps, ......... 163 

Atlases and World Maps, ....... 165 

Books received, ........ 166 

{Portrait, Map, and Illustrations.) 

No. IV.— APRIL. 

By Marion I. 


By Lionel W. 




The Swiss Valais : A Study in Regional Geography. 

Newbigin, D.Sc. (Lond.), 
The Rivers of Scotland : The Beauly and Conon. 

Hinxman, B.A., F.R.S.E., 
The Black Man's Mind, .... 
Geographical Notes, ..... 

Old Italian Charts— The Lake of Pangong— A New Volcanic Island— A New 
Zealand Geyser— The Geological Survey of New Zealand— The Structure 
and Topography of Graham Land — Meteorology in the Antarctic — New 
Arctic Expedition— The Production of Cereals in France— The Commercial 
and Colonial Expansion of Modern States — Rubber Cultivatiou in Ceylon — 
The British Association. 

Educational, ......... 



New Books, ......... 

Books received, ........ 

(Illustrations, Maps, and Diagrams.) 

No. V. -MAY. 

The Swiss Valais : A Study in Regional Geography. By Marion I. New- 
bigin, D.Sc. (Lend.), ...... 

Cossacks and Cossackdom. By V. Dingelstedt, Corr. Member of the 

Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, . 

Geographical Notes, ........ 

The Lagoons of Venice — Sven Hedin's Expedition — The New Volcanic Island 
off Burma — The Wellman Polar Expedition — New Belgian Antarctic Expedi- 
tion — The Problem of the Eeturn Trade-winds— The Royal Geographical 
Society's Annual Awards — The Scottish Meteorological Society — New Rail- 
ways in Switzerland. 

Educational, . 
New Books, . 
New Maps, . 
Books received, 

{Maps and Illustrations.) 









No. VI.— JUNE. 

Some Old Mexican Volcanoes. By Henry M. Cadell, B.Sc, F.R.S.E., . 281 
Geographical Notes, . . . . . . . .312 

The Sierra Nevada and the Alpujarra — Glaciation and Volcanic Deposits near 
Rome— The History of the Scandinavian Flora — The French Census of 1906 
— The Colony of Erythrea — Welwitschia and Climatic Change in Damara- 
land — Inter-Oceanic Canals in Colombia — Rate of Recession of Niagara 
Falls — The Anglo-American Polar Expedition — Prince Charles Foreland, 
Spitsbergen— The Water Supply of Egypt— Niger Railway— Retirement of 
Professor Emile A. Goeldi. 

Educational, ......... 320 

New Books, ........ 322 

Books received, ... ..... 335 

(Map and Illustrations.) 

No. VII.— JULY. 

Address to the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science, 

Adelaide Meeting, 1907. By T. W. Fowler, . . . 337 

Bathymetrical Survey of the Fresh-Water Lochs of Scotland. Under the 
Direction of Sir John Murray, K.C.B., F.R.S., D.Sc, etc., and 
Laurence Pullar, F.R.S.E., ...... 346 

The Vagaries of the Colorado River. By J. W. Redway, F.R.G.S., . 360 

The Vegetation of Western Australia : a Review, . . . 363 

' b 



The Southern Highlands from Glasgow. By John Frew, M.A., B.Sc, 

and Frederick Mort, M.A., B.Sc, F.G.S., . . . .367 

The British Antarctic Expedition, 1907. By E. H. Sbackleton, . . 372 

The Future of Japan : A Review, ...... 374 

Geographical Notes, ........ 377 

The Fauna of Great Britain and Ireland — The Distribution of the Population 
of Lower Languedoc— The Origin of the River System of North Belgium — 
The British Museum Expedition to Central Africa — The Rainfall of German 
West Africa — Glacial Erosion in Alaska — Chamois in New Zealand — Fauna 
and Flora of Spitsbergen— The Second Belgian Antarctic Expedition — The 
Wellnian Polar Expedition^New Antarctic Expedition — Progress of Argen- 
tina — Minerals in Ireland — The Harbour of Bruges — Railwaj* Schemes in 
Switzerland— Personal. 
Educational, ......... 385 

New Books, ......... 388 

Books received, . . . . . .391 

{Map and Figures.) 


Notes and Observations on an Expedition in the Western Cape Colony. 

By Lieut. J. A. G. Elliot, ...... 393 

Athens. Notes on a Recent Visit. By Ralph Richardson, Hon. Sec. 

R.S.G.S., 422 

Obituary : Dr. Alexander Buchan. By Hugh Robert Mill, D.Sc, . 427 

Geographical Notes, . . . .431 

The Variations of Lake Chad— The Benguela-Katanga Railway— Salton Sea 

—North Polar Problems— The Franklin Search Expedition— The British 

Antarctic Expedition, 1907 — Personal — International Congress of 


Educational, ......... 436 

New Books, ......... 437 

New Maps, ......... 446 

New Atlases, ........ 447 

(Map and Illustrations.) 


Old Scottish Volcanoes. By Professor James Geikie, LL.D., D.C.L., 

The Mergui Archipelago : Its People and Products. By R. N. Rudmose 
Brown, B.Sc, •••.... 

Irrigation Projects in the United States, ..... 

Geographical Notes, ........ 

The Ben Nevis Observatory— Expedition to Central Asia— The Peopling of 
Algeria— Expedition to South America— The Scottish Arctic Expedition— 
The British Antarctic Expedition— Commander Peary's New Expedition— 
The French Antarctic Expedition— Railways in Nigeria— Personal. 




Educational, . 
New Books, . 
Books received, 







Geography and Commerce. By George G. Chisholm, M.A., B.Sc, . 505 

The Place of Origin of the Moon — The Volcanic Problem. By Professor 

William H. Pickering, Harvard University, . . . 523 

The Jamaica Earthquake. By Professor Charles W. Brown, Brown 

University ........ 535 

Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, . . . 543 

Geographical Notes, ....... 545 

The Geology of .Japan — The Hydrography of the Sangpo — The Nyasaland 
Protectorate — Plant-zones on Mt. Ruwenzori— French Guiana — The Sierra 
Maestra of Cuba — Population of Commonwealth of Australia — The Anglo- 
American Polar Expedition — Mr. Harrison's Arctic Expedition — The Well- 
man Polar Expedition — The Ninth International Geographical Congress — 
The Economic Development of Japan. 
Educational, . . . . . . . . .551 

New Books, ......... 552 

Books received, ........ 559 



The New Fields of Geography, especially Commercial Geography. By 

Prof. Dr. Max Eckert (Aachen), ..... 561 

Ancient Khotan : A Review, ...... 568 

Manuscript Maps by Pont, the Gordons, and Adair, in the Advocates' 

Library, Edinburgh. By C. G. Cash, F.R.S.G.S., . . .574 

The Leicester Meeting of the British Association, .... 593 

Geographical Notes, ........ 598 

The Anglo-Russian Agreement— Dr. Stein's Expedition — Dr. Sven Hedin's 
Expedition — Lake Chad and the Yo River — The Surveys of British Africa 
— The Frontier of Liberia — The Scottish Arctic Expedition — The Prince of 
Monaco's Spitsbergen Expedition — Mr. Harrison's Expedition — Cruise of 
the Belgica, July-September 1907 — Centenary of London Geological 
Society — The Nyasaland Railway — Commercial Possibilities of West 
Africa — Personal. 
Educational, ......... 606 

New Books, ......... 608 

New Maps, ......... 613 

Books received, . . . . . . . .616 





Geography and Statecraft. By the Right Hon. Viscount Milner, P.O., 
G.C.B., G.C.M.G., Gold Medallist of the Royal Scottish Geo- 
graphical Society, . .617 
The Study of the Weather as a Branch of Nature Knowledge. By 

Marion I. Newbigin, D.Sc, ..... 627 

Proceedings of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, . . . 648 

Obituary, ......... 651 

Geographical Notes, ........ 652 

Report on the Progress of the Ordnance Survey — Bennett Island — Upper 
Burma — The Frontier of Liberia— Expedition to the Arctic — The Anglo- 
American Polar Expedition — The Agricultural Development of Mada- 
Educational, ......... 658 

New Books, ......... 659 

Books received, ........ 667 

Report of Council, ........ 669 

{Portrait, Map and Illustrations.) 

Index . . . . . . . . . 673 

Gold Medallist of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. 

D.C.L., LL.D. 





By Sir George Taubm.a.n Goldie, F.R.S., D.C.L., LL.D., 
President of the Royal Geographical Society. 

GEOGRA.PHY is an eminently practical branch of knowledge, and it may, 
perhaps, be contended that it has no place for ideals. There is, indeed, 
a general aspect of the subject which appeals to the imagination with 
almost overwhelming force. To explain my meaning, let me first ask 
and answer the question, What is the hem or field of Geography % It is 
the surface of our globe, in which term we also include the atmosphere 
and such depths of the lithosphere and hydrosphere as are or have 
been penetrated or examined by man ; so that, to a large extent, it 
coincides with the locus or field of biology, although the contents of the 
two sciences are, of course, very different. The exactness of my defini- 
tion may be disputed, but it is sufficiently accurate for my purpose. 
The entire field of geography is, in any case, only a thin film of air, 
earth and water rotating and advancing amongst the immensities of 
the stellar system. But this exiguous film, insignificant in dimensions 
as compared even with the volume of our small planet, contains all 
that we know of thought and sensation existing in the universe. 
Speculate as we may, hope as we may, believe as we may, this minute 
and whirling field of geography is to us the only place in which, so 
far as our present knowledge goes, those phenomena exist which 
differentiate life from inert matter, the only field where the mysteries 
of reproduction, volition, reason, and imagination have their home. 

But apart from this general aspect of an awe-inspiring and yet 

1 An address delivered at the Opening Meeting of the Society in Edinburgh on 
November 22. 



fantastic i^osition, the science of geography is essentially utilitarian. 
Why then should it need ideals ? The answer, to my mind, is that 
in order to produce the most effective practical work in any depart- 
ment of life, it is necessary to have ideals ; even though we can no 
more hope to attain them absolutely than the asymptote can actually 
reach the curve which it is ever approaching. Counsels of perfection 
are, indeed, so often employed as a reason for ill-considered action, or as 
an excuse for inaction, that it is easy to understand the impatience 
with which they are generally brushed aside by the practical but not 
highly imaginative Englishman ; but when they are set up only as 
goals towards which we should struggle, by paths however devious, by 
successions of compromises, with well-timed haste and with well-timed 
rest, their value cannot be overestimated. I can think of no finer 
example of this truth than is to be found in the life of David Living- 
stone, who was at once an idealist and a practical woiker in the highest 
degree, and who may also be held to have approached as nearly as human 
nature permits to our conception of an ideal explorer. > 

Exploration. — I propose to deal, in the first place, with the ideal 
explorer, partly because of the occasion which brings me here to-night, 
the award of the Livingstone medal, but mainly because exploration 
in the present or in the past is the very foundation on which all 
geography rests. Whether the term exploration be applied to travel 
amongst barbarous tribes in the heart of an unknown continent, or to 
the peripatetic examination of some geographical problem in one's own 
country, the category of the most efifective qualities of character and 
method remains much the same, however different may be the degree in 
which those qualities are called upon to be displayed. 

With an almost unprecedented store of the more passive qualities of 
physical courage, tact, patience and endurance, which a long life of 
dangers, obstacles, privations and sickness could not exhaust, Livingstone 
possessed an equally remarkable store of those more active qualities, 
which many men have shown for shorter periods, but which few have 
been able to maintain as he did, during decade after decade, the power 
of initiative, the almost unerring perception of the most effective ways 
of attaining his objects with the very limited resources at his disposal, 
the unwearying persistence in pursuing those objects, and perhaps, above 
all, the moral courage with which he continually risked one of the most 
depressing of human calamities, failure. With the exception of physical 
courage and endurance, the need for which in geographical exploration 
is rapidly disappearing, these passive and active qualities of character 
will always remain essential, though in a lesser degree, to the investi- 
gator of nature abroad or at home. 

As regards Livingstone's qualities of method I would specially deal 
with his adaptation and cultivation of his mental acquirements for 
service in eveiy branch of the work which he set himself to perform. 
Geographers are, perhaps, apt to forget, and missionary societies, at one 
period of his life, certainly forgot that although Livingstone ranks as the 
most notable explorer of modern days, taking into account the great 
number of years over which his services extended, he was (one may say) 


born a missionary, he lived a missionary, he died a nii&sionary. He 
foresaw, wlien still a youth, that for this work a medical education 
would be invaluable, a truth which was not so widely appreciated in 
those days as it is now. The story of his extreme privations and 
difficulties in obtaining the desired education in surgery and medicine, 
while barely earning his living in a factory, is at once pathetic and 
bracing, but my business is only to note that if he had not acquired that 
knowledge it would not have been a question of his succeeding less 
completely as an explorer ; it would have meant his entire failure at an 
early stage of his exploration?. Of similar character was his thorough 
acquaintance with the use of tools which he foresaw would be of some 
value when he became a missionary, and which proved of incalculable 
value when he, at a later period, superimposed on that calling the career 
of an explorer. Fortunately also, for general science, Livingstone had, 
as a boy, taken great interest in botany, geology and zoology, and had 
devoted his leisure to searches for specimens in the country surrounding 
his home. At a later period, he cultivated to his utmost power his 
acquaintance with these branches of knowledge, with the result that the 
great value of his contributions from Africa was recognised by the most 
competent authorities. I need only refer to the testimony of no less a 
person than Professor Owen as regards Livingstone's contributions to 
zoology and paleontology, to the repeated tribute which Sir Eoderick 
Murchison paid to his services to geology and physical geography, and 
to the following remark made by the then astronomer-royal at the Cape. 
" I never knew a man," said Sir Thomas Maclear, " who, knowing 
scarcely anything of the method of making geographical observations or 
laying down positions, became so soon an adept, that he could take the 
complete lunar observation and altitudes for time within fifteen minutes." 
I quote this verbatim because it shows the intensity and whole-hearted- 
ness with which Livingstone threw himself into any new study which 
his new career demanded, but the need of which he could not foresee 
until he determined to abandon his South African mission station for 
exploration in unknown lands. 

The special branches of knowledge in which Livingstone trained and 
perfected himself are not, of course, all needed for explorers in every 
part of the world, or in every branch of exploration in its widest and 
truest sense. The explorer who travels round the shores of Britain to 
examine the conditions of coast erosion will not need for this purpose 
the particular mental equipment with which Livingstone armed himself, 
such as medical knowledge, skill in the use of tools, acquaintance with 
botany and zoology, ability to take accurate astronomical observations ; 
but he will need, as fully as Livingstone needed, whatever special 
acquirements his object demands, and he will approach the ideal explorer 
in exact proportion to his previous cultivation of the necessary technical 
knowledge and powers of scientific observation, and to the character 
which he displays in the pursuit of his labours. Tact, persistence and 
moral courage are hardly less essential to genuine success in civilised 
lands than they are in barbarous regions, and it is indeed an open ques- 
tion whether African chiefs, in the days of their independence, were not. 


as a rule, less unsatisfactory to deal with than the governments of our 
own and neighbouring countries, 

Cartor/rophij. — Upon the foundation of exploration, in its wider 
meaning, geography constructs its basement of cartography on which 
must rest the entire superstructure of the science, so that our next 
question concerns the ideals towards which cartographers should ad- 
vance. Many years ago the late Elisee Eeclus, perhaps the greatest 
geographer of the generation now passing away, strongly advocated 
before the Royal Geographical Society a method which must, I fear, 
long remain only an ideal, namely the use of relief globes, or sections of 
globes, of such dimensions — say on the scale of I to 100,000 — that even 
heights of 150 feet would be distinctly shown, without adopting the usual 
method in relief maps of exaggerating the proportional height of hills 
and mountains. On globes of such dimensions the geological and 
ecological features of the surface could also be displayed in considerable 
detail. After quoting the view urged many years ago by a scientist, 
whom he justly termed " one of our eminent geographers, Dr. H. R, 
Mill," that " accurate cartographic representation is the very essence of 
geography," Elisee Reclus proceeded to point out that " there is only one 
way to represent truly the surface of the earth. Curves are to be 
translated in carves. , . . Therefore are we really astonished that public 
attention and the special care of geographers are so little attracted 
towards this logical mode of geographical work." He noted that globes 
of considerable dimensions — up to the scale of one millionth — had 
indeed been made for exhibition purposes, but that these had *' made no 
pretence to accuracy in geography proper." He might have added that, 
on so small a scale, such globes would have been useless for effective 
hypsometrical representation as regards regions where the elevations 
were generally less than 3000 feet, so that while Scotland would display 
some of her beautiful hypsometrical features, England would show a 
somewhat plain face. It will not be denied that there is immense force 
in Elis6e Reclus's proposals. Under the existing system of education boys 
are taught to think of the earth's surface only in terms of plane 
trigonometry ; and although this method is approximately accurate over 
small areas, it is absolutely misleading when the areas are large, the 
globes in ordinary use being so small as to make it difficult for a boy to 
co-ordinate them in thought with the flat maps presented to him of 
individual countries. Moreover, it is one of the important advantages 
of real geographical study, as it is of the study of astronomy, that the 
mind is trained to think in terms of both spherical and plane trigono- 
metry; and this double standpoint gives the student that stereoscopic 
view of nature which is essential in every department of thought, if 
existence is to be appreciated as a solid reality instead of as a flat and 
unsubstantial picture. The more effective qualities of the average 
officer of the navy or the mercantile marine (as compared Avith the 
average landsman of equal general education) are everywhere recognised, 
and are, doubtless, due to several concurrent causes ; but it does not 
seem to me far-fetched to attribute them in some part to his studies in 
navigation which necessitate his acquisition of the habit of viewing 


space from a double standpoint. In elucidation of my meaning I would 
recall a remark made to me many years ago by a great pliilologist that 
when a man for the first time studies another language than his own, 
he acquires ideas on language generally which would otherwise have 
always remained unknown, and even inconceivable to him. One of our 
leading statesmen invented the hapj^y phrase " Learn to think imperially." 
I would say to the young geograi)her, learn to think spherically. 

Before leaving Elisee Reclus's proposals for exhibiting the earth's 
surface on curves and in relief with the same scale for plan and eleva- 
tions, I feel compelled to protest, of course with the greatest deference, 
against the unmitigated scorn and condemnation which he and some 
other eminent geographers have heaped upon the usual system of relief 
maps or globes which exaggerate the proportional height of hills. Until 
we reach Reclus's ideal of globes or sections of sufficient dimensions to 
depict the true hypsometrical proportions, and until such globes or 
sections can be so multiplied as to be within reach of every school 
throughout the civilised world, it is difficult to see how an average boy 
is to acquire, without the aid of the ordinary relief map, an initial grasp 
of the morphology of an extensive region. No doubt the use of the 
ordinary relief map must be accompanied by careful explanation of the 
difference of the vertical and horizontal scales ; but it does not require 
much imagination in the student to make the necessary mental adjust- 
ments. Those of you who have, when bicycling or motoring, used a 
guide-book giving profiles of the roads with a vertical scale several 
times as large as the horizontal scale, will, I feel sure, confirm this view. 
My protest arises from personal experience. It was not until at the age 
of nineteen I visited Switzerland and Germany, which, even at that 
date, possessed excellent relief maps, with of course exaggerated heights, 
that morphology became a reality to me ; and there must be millions 
who, like myself, have not been gifted with an innate initial power of 
full realisation from representation by projection, where perspective 
cannot be called in to assist. Once the sentiment of reality is fully 
established by the aid of relief representations of a region over which 
one moves, flat projections become for ever as communicative as they 
are to those more fortunate persons who are born cartographers. 

For the present, Reclus's gigantic globes or sections of globes are not 
available and we must do the best that we can to improve our flat maps. 
The ideal flat map would include every datum with which the science 
of Geography in its most advanced state would deal. It would repre- 
sent all the great physical features of the earth's surface, land and water 
in all their various forms, mountains and hills, valleys, plains, plateaus 
and depressions, oceans, inland seas, lakes and rivers. It would show 
both the hypsometrical features of the lithosphere and the bathymetrical 
features of the hydrosphere. It would indicate in a general way the 
surface geology. It would mark the average rainfall and prevailing 
temperature. It would show the main economic or ecological charac- 
teristics of regions represented on a small scale, and would deal in 
detail, on a large scale, with regions calling for special attention ; while 
in wholly undeveloped parts of the world, the characteristics of the 


surface would be exhibited, such as forest, prairie or other grass lands, 
desert and swamp. It would indicate the distribution of life in its 
various forms, showing the leading features of vegetable life, and the 
principal types of wild animals, where such existed. So far, however, 
the ideal map would exhibit only the framework in which humanity is 
set, the theatre on which man has to play his part. To make it 
complete, it must show the distribution of various types of mankind 
over the face of the earth, the boundaries of states, the density of popu- 
lation, and to some extent the general results of man's interference with 
natural conditions, or what is generally regarded as political and economic 
geography. I do not pretend to have exhausted all that it should 
exhibit. I have only pointed out leading features that it should not 
omit ; and I may sum up by saying that the ideal map of a region should 
contain in cartographical symbols all the information which would be 
necessary to a student who wished to write a complete geographical 
memoir of the region ; for cartography is the basis of all sound 
geography. Such a map is at present only an ideal which should be 
striven after by all conscientious and competent cartographers, as far as 
is now practicable. The question of the best methods and symbols to 
be employed must be left for discussion by cartographical experts, who 
appear, however, to have widely differing views on the subject; but 
criticism is permissible to those who have not constructive or creative 
genius, and I may point out one method which is clearly unscientific. 
One has seen maps issued from time to time under the title of com- 
mercial maps, and professing to show the distribution of products and 
industries, in which the names of these seemed as if they had been dis- 
tributed over the sheet by means of a pepper box. Horses, silk, cattle, 
iron, sheep, grass, pigs, wheat, wine, and scores of other names were 
scattered in a haphazard fashion, which not only failed to inform, but 
actually misled any one unacquainted with the regions represented. 

One of the most difficult tasks for the cartographer seems to be an 
adequate representation of the hypsometrical features of the earth's 
surface. For certain purposes the contour map is very useful, especially 
if, as in the Swedish Official Survey map, each contour is shaded with a 
gradually intensified tint of brown from the sea-level upwards. A very 
effective metliod of contouring is that which Japan adopted some 
twenty years ago, and which is now used in the United States Geolo- 
gical and Geographical Survey. This consists of lines in a tint of brown 
so arranged that at a slight distance it produces the effect of excellent 
hill shading : while, on close inspection, one is able to read the contours. 
Perhaps, however, the best result is produced when really good hill 
shading is used in combination with contours, as is the case with the 
Swiss Survey maps. This method shows very clearly the lie of the 
land, while one can also read the contours from the lowest level to the 
highest. Another very good example of this method is the map of 
Tunis, on a scale of 1 to 50,000, which has been recently published by 
the French Intelligence Department. I feel that it might be invidious 
to mention by name any particular cartographical establishment in 
these islands, or even on the continent of Europe, but I have little 


doubt that most of you have already made up your minds as to which, 
on the whole, are the most useful as well as the most artistic Atlases 
available in the United Kingdom. My chief fear is that the majority 
of the general public who have not yet been reached by the geographical 
training so rapidly spreading on improved lines all over the country, 
may form their estimate of atlases on their cheapness or on their quan- 
tity and not their quality, or on the number of names which are to be 
found in their indexes. Other things being equal and subject to there 
being no sacrifice of clearness, a large number of names is an advan- 
tage, but if they are divorced from their natural physical and economic 
setting they convey very little real information. I hope that the time 
has passed when it was thought that any production was good enough 
for a school map or a school atlas, and that we are alive to the obvious 
fact that the maps on which children are trained have no less importance 
than those which are for the use of adults. It may not perhaps be prac- 
ticable to produce an atlas in which all the maps are on the same scale, 
but some confusion in juvenile minds might perhaps be avoided if the 
maps were all on a multiple or a measure of a standard scale. It will, I 
think, be generally agreed that thex'e is room to-day for even a better 
atlas than any now existing, and we can only hope that with the spread 
of geographical education the necessary encouragement may be given to 
publishers to expend the large amounts which the production of a first- 
class atlas would undoubtedly require. 

Geogmpluj in War and Peace. — To whatever point of excellence carto- 
graphy may be brought, however, it can never be more than a means to 
an end, excepting to a small number of artistic minds to whom a really 
fine map is a thing of beauty and a joy for ever. The same principle 
applies to geographical knowledge generally, which may be its own 
reward to a few detached minds, but which will be estimated by most 
men at its practical value to mankind. A few words must therefore be 
said as to their most important uses in war and peace, and we may 
possibly find some ideals at which we should aim in these directions. I 
put war first as the primitive state of mankind and not yet entirely out 
of date. It is a moot question whether war is more useful to geography 
or geography to war. The proposition that war has been one of the 
greatest geographers has been so frequently expounded at length and is 
so obvious to the student of history that I need not dwell upon it in this 
brief address, only remarking that it is interesting to find the conviction 
of its truth existing even in the United States where, more than in any 
other great country, the development of geographical knowledge and 
peaceful expansion have gone hand in hand. 

During the Spanish-American War a well-known scientific authority, 
Professor Chamberlin of Chicago, pointed out that the war might be 
expected to produce a great revival of interest in geography throughout 
the United States. He concluded : " It was observed at the close of the 
Civil War that those who returned from its campaigns possessed an 
appreciation of the elements of position and physical relationship quite 
beyond that realised by the preceding generation educated under the 
benign influences of peace." 


We now know that Professor Chamberlin's forecast was correct, the' 
Spanish-American War having given an undoubted acceleration to the 
progress of the geographical spirit in the United States similar to that 
which he tells us was observed after the Civil War. 

The value of geography in Avar, on the other hand, may perhaps be 
best brought home to our own countrymen by recalling the enormous 
expenditure in which the want both of maps and of geographical 
training of our oiRcers indirectly involved us during the Boer War. I 
can speak confidently on these points from having served (for nearly a 
year) on the Royal Commission on the South African War. It is a 
matter of deep regret that, during the many years of peace and colonial 
expansion at the close of the last century, Great Britain did not expend 
a moderate sum annually in mapping the unsurveyed portions of the 
Empire. We should not then have found ourselves attempting to 
relieve Ladysmith or advancing to the Modder Eiver without maps of 
the country. It is only fair to add that the lesson of the war, in this 
respect, has not been altogether forgotten. During the last four years 
a certain amount of money has been expended in imperial mapping of 
hitherto unsurveyed regions ; and if this process is not altogether 
arrested by a spirit of false economy, we may possibly at some distant 
date possess fairly adequate maps of all British possessions. That is at 
any rate an ideal which we should strive to attain. As regards the 
want of geographical training of our officers, I have not time to cite the 
mass of evidence given before our Commission by the most competent 
authorities as to the general deficiency in knowledge of ground, than 
which, as Lord Roberts and others pointed out, nothing could be more 
important in war. Even as regards staff officers, who have considerably 
more training in this subject than the ordinary regimental officers, Lord 
Roberts was often struck with their inability to read maps well or to 
explain quickly and intelligently about the contours and elevations. In 
this respect our ideal should be to reach the level attained by Japanese 
and German officers. 

Geographical ignorance is a costly luxury in times of war, but it is 
perhaps still more costly in times of peace. No estimate, even of the 
roughest kind, can be formed of the vast sums that have been wasted in 
modern days through States collectively, on the one hand, and individual 
settlers, on the other hand, attempting to produce grapes from thorns 
and figs from thistles. 

This subject of the practical uses of ecology, or economic geography, 
is far too large to be treated here incidentally ; it would require an 
address or rather a series of addresses to itself. A mass of literature 
on the subject already exists; but this will probably be read only by 
specialists, or by those who can give a good deal of their time to scien- 
tific geography. For others, the best short manual on the general 
question is still, to my mind, that entitled Applied Gecgraphy, by Dr. 
Scott Keltic, who is recognised, both at home and abroad, as one of 
the most capable and best informed geographers of this or any other 
countiy. I understand that he is a Scotsman ; and as I am speaking 
to a Scottish audience, I may briefly refer to the splendid ecological 


work that Scotland has done in the exploration, settling and devek p- 
ment of those vast regions known as the Dominion of Canada, which 
have before them so assured and so great a future. The part that 
Scotland has played in that work up to 1882 is, I think, best told in 
Mr. Rattray's The Scot in Brituh North America, which many of you will 
have read. I may say that it was lent to me by a very distinguished 
Scot, whom the rising generation probably know chiefly as the Lord 
Strathcona, who raised and equipped Strathcona's horse during the 
Boer War, but whom older geographers remember as the Donald Smith 
who played so important a part in the development of the North-West 
regions. I need hardly remind you that from Canada comes another 
Scot — Sir John Murray — who is, admittedly, the greatest oceano- 
grapher and limnologist that the world has produced ; that the most 
successful settlement in South Africa was the Scotch settlement in 
Cape Colony; that Natal is a second Scotland; that the acquisition of 
British rights in East Africa, which promises to show important 
ecological results, was due to the efforts of the late Sir William 
Mackinnon, and was largely the result of the explorations of Joseph 
Thomson; that the province known by the misleading name of British 
Central Africa was opened up to commerce by the Scottish African 
Lakes Company, and was made into a peaceful British possession by 
the first recipient of your Livingstone Medal, Sir Harry Johnston; or 
that, a century ago, the marvellous travels of Mungo Park were the 
genesis of the entire movement which has opened up Africa to civi- 
lisation. It must, I think, be admitted that Scotland was in the fore- 
front of the great geographical and imperial movement of the nine- 
teenth century. Nor has she neglected the more purely scientific sides 
of geography, as Avas evidenced by the recent successful national expedi- 
tion to the Antarctic regions ; while her cartography, as represented by 
Keith Johnston and Bartholomew, has undoubtedly led the way in these 
islands. I trust that this vigorous and practical geographical spirit 
may long endure and, if possible, increase. Although the era of ex- 
ploration, in the conventional sense, is drawing to a close, there is an 
unlimited field open for scientific exploration and economic treatment. 
Mankind has hitherto dealt with the surface of Mother earth in a hap- 
hazard, a hand-to-mouth fashion, without much scientific study of the 
varying ecological conditions in different localities, due to the various 
combinations of slightly differing climates, soils and other geographical 
data. Is it an unattainable ideal that scientific changes in the distribu- 
tion and methods of production may some day raise humanity, so far as 
material comfort is concerned, as much above its existing standard as 
this is above the material condition of the ill-clothed, ill-sheltered, ill- 
fed denizens of these islands at the commencement of our present era'? 

Education. — Whatever may be the proper aims of geography as a 
science of the utmost value, both in war and in peace, sound and exten- 
sive geographical education is an essential condition of advance towards 
those aims, and the question at once confronts us as to what should 
be our educational ideals. You will remember that, after the House- 
hold Suffrage Act, Robert Lowe gave the celebrated advice, often attri- 


buted to Lord Beaconsfield, " Let us educate our masters." By our 
masters Mr, Lowe meant of course the masses, and the nation have had 
the question of the education of the masses with them for a whole 
generation ; while — at any rate south of the Tweed — they seem likely 
to have it with them for some generations to come ; but I venture to 
repeat here, what 1 have often urged elsewhere, that on many subjects, 
of which geography is one, we need in the first place to educate the 
classes. This may not be an unattainable ideal, though it is still 

In an address which I delivered at York last August before the 
British Association I j) tinted out the advance during the last quarter of 
a century in the interest in and appreciation of geography displayed by 
the governing classes. A case of atavism, recently brought to my notice, 
makes me fear that I was too sanguine as to the permanence of that 
advance, at any rate in one important quarter. 

In November 1899, regulations were laid down for the examinations 
for the Foreign Office and Diplomatic Service, which naturally (and I 
bdlieve merely in repetition of earlier regulations) made geography an 
obligatory subject. A notice has lately been issued, to come into effect 
after the 1st July next, under which geography will not only not be 
obligatory, but will altogetlier cease to be one of the subjects of exami- 
nation. I have not time to give you a list of the many other subjects 
for which marks will be given to candidates, and which do not seem to 
be as important as geograpli}^ to a Foreign Office clerk or to a Secretary 
of an Embassy. I will only select six rather striking examples : Animal 
Physiology, Physics, Chemistry, Moral atid Metaphysical Piiilosophy, 
Sanskrit Language and Literature, and Zoology, which, of course, may 
be useful if the official spends his leave in a country where big game is 
plentiful. In these six subjects the candidate might make 3600 marks 
out of the maximum of 6000, which he is not allowed to exceed; while 
not a single mark is given for Geography. One is reminded of Mr. 
W. S. Gilbert's "Pattern of a modern Major-General, " in "The Pirates 
of Penzance," who was an adept ia every branch of human knowledge, 
excepting tactics and strategy. 

The urgency of the case impels me to narrate an interesting incident 
not yet published, especially as the principal actors in the scene are 
dead, so that no one's feelings will be hurt by the narration. A good 
many years ago a territorial arrangement with France was in discussion, 
and I was invited to consider it. The French proposals appeared to 
the Foreign Office satisfactory ; but I found that they were expressed, 
as might have been expected, in longitudes reckoned from the meridian 
of Paris, while the map with which our Foreign Office had considered 
these proposals was made in Germany and reckoned its longitudes 
from the meridian of Greenwich. The arrangement in question was 
never completed. 

Tliis was an instance which came under my personal observation, 
but it is a matter of notoriety that some of our most serious inter- 
national disputes of recent years have arisen from the faulty geographical 
knowledge of the negotiators of treaties in the darker ages. I believe 


that our Foreign Office and Diplomatic Service for years past have been 
filled with men of considerable geographical knowledge; but this im- 
proved condition will not last if geography is to be eliminated from 
their examinations, and Great Britain will see its future dii^lomatists 
contending with bows and arrows against foreign diplomatists armed 
Avith the best weapons of the twentieth century. The most serious 
feature of the case, however, is that such an official denial of the national 
importance of geographical education is to-day possible. It shows the 
immense obstacles that still confront our Geographical Societies before 
they can make great and lasting advance in what seems to me one of 
their most urgent duties, that of educating the classes of Britain. 

Turning from this fundamental postulate to the general principles 
underlying a sound geographical education, I should like to put before 
you the substance of a most interesting letter on the subject which I 
have recently received from Mr. H. J. Mackinder, Director of the 
London School of Economics, and whom you know to be one of the 
highest authorities in Britain on Geographical Education. I have only 
time to read extracts ; so that you Avill not hold the writer too closely 
to passages given without their context. He says, " Geography must not 
be thought of as a mass of information merely, or indeed chiefly. Its 
distinguishing characteristic, giving it peculiar value as a discipline, is 
that it has its own special point of view and mode of thought and of 
memory. The geographer thinks in spaces and shapes. So far from 
names being material to the subject, even words are not essential to 
geographical thought. ... In the elementary stage the teaching of 
geography should not adhere pedantically to any method. The main 
point is that a few things should be vividly and rationally taught. 
Such precision as is involved in the use of latitudes and longitudes 
should be eschewed, unless in the highest standards. No doubt nature- 
study should come first, but it must not be substituted for geography, 
for which it only prepares. ... In secondary education the teaching of 
geography should, I think, be more methodical and precise, but what is 
chiefly important is that it should be progressive in method. Geography 
may well serve in this stage for the purpose of correlating subjects, both 
scientific and historical, but the more that such a function is assigned 
to it the more necessary does it become to have a clearly defined and 
strictly geographical argument running through the whole of the teach- 
ing. In other words, the geographical point of view must be dominant, 
and not the view points of this or tliat auxiliary science. ... In the 
University stage, geography should be studied both from a specialist 
and from a general standpoint ; that is to say, that while it is a con- 
dition of progress in our knowledge that we forsake the whole field and 
c )ncentrate on some part of it, yet it is only in the university stage that 
what I may describe as the philosophy of the subject can be fully appre- 
ciated. It is essential, however, that the specialist should already have 
firmly acquired the geographical method and the geographical point 
of view. Until secondary education in geography is more generally 
thorough, I fear that the University teacher of the subject will have to 
teach much which in a future generation will have been learned by his 


pupils before they come to him. To my mind, by far the most impor- 
tant function of the University teacher of geography in the present and 
immediate future must be to produce a considerable number of good 
secondary teachers of the subject, and to establish a tradition of 
geographical school teaching. The danger of the moment is that in 
view of the sudden demand for school teachers of geography which 
has recently sprung up, we shall be tempted to equip and employ 
persons of inferior general education and mental power. Geography 
requires in the teacher both a firm grasp of principle and a broad out- 
look. With these qualities, I believe that it can be made a discipline 
of the highest order, but no subject is so easily reduced by an inferior 
teacher to a low pedagogic value, worthy of all tlie contempt that has 
been poured upon it." 

Although Mr. Mackinder's remarks in this letter proceed from 
elementary teaching upward to the University, we know that he is in 
full accord with the policy followed by the Royal Geographical Society 
during the last twenty years, of regarding recognition of geography at 
our great Universities as the first and most important step in impreg- 
nating the country with a geographical spirit, and of working downward 
from there into the masses of the nation. As I dwelt on this question 
at length in my York address, I will only add that it now seems certain 
that the Welsh University will shortly have a Reader in Geography, 
and that 1 cannot doubt that Scotland will succeed in her present efforts 
to endow a Chair of Geography at the University of Edinburgh, which 
has, I understand, done all in its power to facilitate such a measure. 
It would, indeed, be extraordinary if this country, which, as I have 
just shown, has been in the forefront of the great geographical move- 
ment of the last century, should allow herself to be permanently 
distanced in this one direction — admittedly of the highest importance — 
not only by Oxford, Cambridge, and London, but also by Manchester, 
Birmingham, and gallant little Wales. 

Amongst the minor methods of arousing interest and imparting 
information in geographical matters, perhaps the most effective is the 
comparatively modern use of photographic lantern slides. For either 
purpose the value of accurate and artistic visual representation accom- 
panying aural explanations can hardly be overestimated, whether the 
spectators and audience are trained geographers or elementary school 
children. Even so lately as thirty years ago geographical lectures were 
generally dreary affairs — excejit for the enthusiastic lew — unrelieved, as 
they were, by pictorial representations. I feel very keenly the dis- 
advantage I am under, or rather that you are under to-night, through 
my having no slides; but there was no remedy; for although photo- 
graphs have, I am told, been taken of ghosts, no one has yet attempted 
to photograph an ideal. When we consider the instruction of children 
the necessity becomes still more evident of interesting the eye as well 
as the ear; and I hope that this principle will be niore and more under- 
stood in our board schools, in most of which the study of geography now 
consists of learning strings of names. The method of visual represen- 
tation has, indeed, spread greatly during the last decade; but it does not 


yet cover a tenth of the field that it might usefully occupy. I believe 
this is partly due to the cost and difficulty of getting good slides, and 
I may be doing a service to some who wish to interest and instruct 
their fellow-parishioners in the country by drawing their attention to 
the series of the Diagram Company, whose address is West Barnes 
Lane, New Maiden, Surrey. I could not, of course, mention this 
Company if they had been formed for purposes of profit. I am told, 
however, that their objects were scientific, and that they do not at 
present cover their expenses. Many of you, doubtless, know their excel- 
lent slides. We have a complete series in Savile Row, and I under- 
stood that one was also kept at the Outlook Tower in this city ; but 
Professor Geddes tells me that this is not now the case. 

Another minor educational ideal is that all books involving move- 
ment from one geographical locality to another should have sketch 
maps attached to them. This principle applies especially to works of 
fiction, which reach a far wider public than is the case with serious 
books. When we re-read the Waverley Novels after reaching maturity, 
and with a knowledge of the positions and surroundings of the localities 
dealt with, we cannot avoid regret that our childish interest in each of 
them was not quickened and our knowledge insensibly increased by a 
simple sketch map on the frontispiece. This stimulating power of pic- 
torial representation is perhaps most clearly demonstrated by a case in 
which the map was as imaginary as the text. How much of the interest 
of Treasure Island would have been lost but for the immortal map with 
which Robert Louis Stevenson enriched it ! Stevenson, indeed, was 
deeply imbued with the geographical spirit, and in several books — I 
can particularly recall Kidnapped — produced real maps which greatly 
assist the young reader. Half a century ago, even history — ancient, 
mediaeval and modern — was read in the best schools without any 
reference to maps, with the result that most of us had to endure the 
loss of time in re-reading, when grown up, a mass of works which we 
had literally, but not geographically, mastered in our youth. 

I have reserved to the last the ^q\v words I need say on the most 
vital and far-reaching of all instruments of geographical education — I 
mean societies such as this. They have afforded means of higher and 
ever-extending knowledge even to the most instructed of their Fellows ; 
they have encouraged the geographical spirit amongst their less zealous 
members ; they have been the chief authors or supporters of all other 
modern means of improvement in geographical education ; while the 
role that lies before them is even more important than that -which they 
have hitherto filled. That is why I am here to-night; and if I might 
add one more ideal to my list of geographical ideals, it is that every 
educated man in Scotland should join your Society, and, by his contri- 
butions to your funds, enable you to extend and intensify your worU in 
promoting a branch of knowledge which is one of the most important, 
if not the most important, of the material sciences to the future welfare 
and progress of mankind. 



{JFith Illustrations.) 

By John Thomson. 

My chief object in coming before this Section is to show on the screen 
a selection of geographical photographs taken by myself during my 
travels, which extended at intervals over a period of forty-five years. 
The major part of the work was done in Far Eastern Asia, between 
1860 and 1872, in regions in which the camera frequently made its 
first appearance. Some plates were taken later to illustrate my work 
on the island of Cyprus, others I have borrowed of recent date 
produced by modern methods. 

Before using the lantern, I will give a brief summary of photographic 
progress, mainly in its bearing upon geographical work. In the early 
days, about half a century ago, the enormous weight of dark tent, 
instruments, and chemicals, combined with the technical difficulties of 
primitive processes, rendered a photographic equipment a very doubtful 
addition to the burden of the explorer bent on a long journey into 
unknown or unphotographed lands. It was an experiment not to be 
lightly undertaken, and in my experience meant the addition of four 
or five carriers for safe transit. 

But happily the rapid advance in photography gradually reduced 
the bulk of impedimenta ; apparatus became lighter, and manipulation 
simpler and more certain in result, until an outfit w^as deemed indis- 
pensable to all properly organised expeditions. 

The evolution of photographic methods kept pace with the progress 
in discovery in almost all departments of Science, and contributed its 
full share of usefulness in extending knowledge and solving problems 
that without its aid would have remained insoluble. In Physical 
Geography it has proved of notable service, especially in helping the 
work of the cartographer. It has made us familiar with the topography 
of remote quarters of the globe, and with the physical characteristics of 
their people, environment, dwellings, tillage, arts, industries, etc. 

I will now touch upon some points in the progress of the art which 
ultimately fitted photography for its vocation as an auxiliary in scientific 
research and artistic pursuits. 

In its initial stages it was regarded as a curious and fascinating 
revelation of the action of light on certain chemical reagents, that is up 
to the time of Daguerre and Fox Talbot ; the former caught the image as 
in a mirror, the latter, the Caxton of Photography, produced the first 
printing process by his introduction of Calotype in 1839. Later, when 
pursuing his investigations with bitumen-coated metal plates, he suc- 
ceeded in etching the first photogravure, and printing from it in an 
ordinary press. He was also first to foresee the potentialities of the 

1 Read before Section G (Geography) at the York Meeting of the British Association, 


new art in relation to Geography. I have a map etched on a metal 
plate about this time by Fox Talbot, aud printed in Edinburgh, first 
copying the original in the camera. After the lapse of some years full 
of endeavour on the part of photographic votaries, who from time to 
time scored advances, Scott Archer gave us his wet collodion process, 
which materially shortened the duration of exposure necessary to obtain 
an impression in the camera, and substituted glass plates as the support 
for the sensitive film. The detail in wet collodion negatives was of 
microscopic minuteness while presenting the finest gradation and 
printing quality, which had never indeed been surpassed by any known 
method. Improvements in cameras and lenses had been going on 
apace, the first gaining in lightness and portability, while plano-convex 
and miniscus lenses had given place to compound objectives, corrected 
for spherical and chromatic aberration, and thus rendering their visual 
and actenic foci coincident. The wet collodion process, appropriately 
so named, could not shed its ponderosity, and was hedged round with 
difficulties, as I had reason to know and appreciate, and ill adapted 
for long journeys. It was the most chemically and mechanically exacting 
companion to be carried on any expedition, and its shortcomings Avere 
accentuated when my wanderings happened to be through forest and 
tropical jungle. One special virtue must be noted, and that is that the 
plate had to be exposed, developed aud finished on the spot, so that one 
was enabled to judge of success or failure before striking camp. 

You will be able to form your estimate of the work done under 
more favourable conditions than I enjoyed in doing it, and I must 
request you to bear in mind difficulties that had to be faced day by 
day, in repairing apparatus, concocting and doctoring chemicals, not to 
mention dangers encountered from unsympathetic natives, who regarded 
the photographer as the devil incarnate, and allow some critical" discount 
in my favour. 

Dry collodion emulsion, introduced in 1864 by Messrs Sayce and 
Bolton, greatly reduced the weight of essentials. I employed plates 
coated with this emulsion later in Cyprus. They were developed with 
an alkaline solution, and were in no wa}' inferior in point of speed or 

Gelatine emulsion, made by Dr. Naddox in 1872, was the crowning 
discovery which entirely revolutionised photography, rendering it 
possible to photograph objects in motion in the fraction of a second. I 
had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of the inventor a year or 
two before his death — one of the most thorough, simple and unaffected 
of men. The cameras in use for dry gelatine plates and films are so 
multiform that they may not even be catalogued. For our purpose it 
is sufficient to say that an outfit for a long journey may now be carried 
in a handbag. 

The ever-widening sphere of usefulness of the camera as an auxiliary 
in scientific investigation, especially in relation to Geography, is so well 
known that I will only venture to note some recent developments which 
may prove useful to the traveller. 

An ordinary well-made camera fitted with shutter and rapid recti- 



linear lens is most useful in securing photographs of all objects which 
may not be carried away. But for anthropological work, as, for example, 
in taking plates of characteristic heads of alien races of men at close 

quarters, the lens should be longer in focus than that used for land- 
scapes or groups. The reason of this is that with a lens of short focus 
the features are so distorted as to render the photograph useless as a 
basis of measurement. The defects could only be partially rectified by 


mathematical calculation on tlie basis of the focus of the lens employed 
and distance from the object photographed. 

In dealing with objects of natural history, such as animals at a great 
distance in their native haunts, an addition to the same camera must 
be made in the shape of a tele-photographic set of lenses, so as to photo- 
graph objects on a scale large enough for subsequent use. The same 
tele-photographic arrangement may be used for a variety of purposes, 
as in taking contours of distant mountain ranges. These are set down 
simply as suggestive notes in camera-work which the traveller who is 
thoroughly acquainted with the use and limitations of the instrument 
may extend at will. Many failures are caused bj' neglect on the 
explorers' part to get fully posted up in the mechanism of the camera 
and shutter, the use of the lens, and the chemicals employed in fixing 
the image, and in development. I have in my mind the poor results 
of some long and arduous journeys brought about by ignorance of the 
elementary conditions of success — plates decomposed, stuck together, 
damp, frilled, fogged, over-exposed, under-exposed, developer wrong ; 
result no image, fixed before being developed, etc., etc. But by a little 
trouble and preliminary training all such pitfalls might have been 
avoided and success assured. 

The seeming simplicity of photographic work has been a prolific 
cause of failure — the notion that one has only to touch a button to obtain 
the best results possible. 

A word on photographic surveying. It is described in Hints to 
Travellers, published by the Royal Geographical Society. 

The apparatus in use is too complicated, and I believe the conditions 
required could be attained by the adjustment of an ordinary camera. 
It should be framed so as to admit of the optical axis being perfectly 
horizontal and the prepared plate at right angles to the axis. Two 
photographs must be taken at points of view some distance from each 
other to give a base-line, and from these the cartographer can set 
down the relative positions of objects shown in the photographs by 

The late Dr. Schlichter in 1893 described a means of finding the 
latitude by lunar observations taken in the camera when a star appeared 
sufficiently near the lunar disc as to come about the centre of the field. 
Several exposures were made on the same plate at properly measured 
intervals of time, these by micrometric measurement forming the basis 
for calculation. The result was an extremely accurate determination of 

I have been frequently asked if photography in colours as it now 
stands may be relied upon to give absolute mimicry of natural objects. 

There is no process by which a photograph in the colour of the 
object photographed may be directly taken in the camera. There are 
metliods in use by which fascinating results are obtained hy taking a 
set of colour registers through three as nearly as possible monochrom- 
atic glass screens or filters — red, blue, and yellowish green ; this is 
termed three-colour photography. The negative so taken may be used 
either for what is called optical synthesis by projection through three 


colour filters by a triuaal lantern, or by reflection and combination in 
an instrament called the Kromoscope. When properly registered the 
result is an image in all the colours of the object photographed. Mr. 
Mackinder was the first English traveller to test this process in his visit 
to Mount Kenia. The negatives again may be printed on transparent 
gelatine tissues stained and superposed, as in the Sanger-Shepherd 
method, or used to make half-tone blocks to be printed in three colours 
in the printing press. 


The scientific expedition which is the subject-matter of the exceedingly 
interesting work now before us, took place in the summer, i.e. the 
Australian summer, of 1901-2, and from the preface we learn that the 
narrative has for the most part already appeared in a Melbourne news- 
paper. Dr. Gregory, the head of the expedition, is now Professor of 
Geology in the University of Glasgow, and he had as his colleagues a 
pirty of eight, most of whom were undergraduates of the University of 
Melbourne. It appears that it was at the suggestion of Dr. Howitt 
that the expedition was undertaken with the view of studying the 
geology of Lake Eyre, the Dead Heart of Australia, and of making a 
collection of its fossil bones. Professor Gregory, the geologist, hoped to 
help Dr. Howitt, the ethnologist and student of the Australian abori- 
gines, " by explaining some of their traditions, by thr()wing light on 
their migrations, and by showing the date of their arrival in Australia." 
Bat before referring to the route and progress of the expp.dition, it is 
right to give to our readers some information about Lake Eyre and its 
vicinity. The tract of Australia, which bears so ominous a name, is one 
of the most remarkable among the many remarkable regions in the 
island continent. It is situated to the north of Spencer Gulf and has 
an area of over three thousand square miles. Its surface is 39 feet 
below the level of the sea. The lake is fed by several rivers and creeks 
on all sides, but its principal contributors are the Diamantina and 
Cooper rivers, which flow into it from the east for some months each 
year. It also receives the drainage water of half a million square miles 
and absorbs it all. The lake may be said to have been discovered in 
the year 1840 by E. J. Eyre, an Australian cattle-driver, who, however, 
was also an explorer in the true sense of the word. The story of the 
discovery and of the angry controversies of the time is succinctly and 
graphically told by Dr. Gregory. So far as the topography of Lake 
Eyre is concerned, the whole locality was carefully surveyed some thirty 
years ago. It is indeed terribly true that now the tract fully merits 
the name of the Dead Heart of Australia, but once on a time the name 

1 The Dead Heart of Australia : A Juurney round Lake Eyre in the Summer of 1901- 
19D2, with som? account of the Lake Ei/re Basin and the Floioinq Wells of Central Australia. 
By J. W. G^egorJ^, F.R.S., D.Sc. London : John Murray, 1906. 


of Living Heart would have been much more appropriate; and this for 
several reasons. " It gives its name to the largest of the three provinces 
into which Australia has been divided on biological evidei.ce: for it is 
the typical district of the 'Eremian' region proposed by the late 
Professor Tate, from the evidence of plant distribution ; and it suggested 
the name of the ' Eyrean Province ' proposed by Professor Spencer, in 
considering the distribution of Australian animals. Anthropologi- 
cally Lake Eyre is important, as it was the headquarters of the natives 
of the two-class marriage group, who advanced thence south-westward 
to the Eyre Peninsula and spread south-eastward until they peopled 
Western Victoria." But unhappily, owing to a deficient rainfall, the 
climatic condition of Lake Eyre changed, and it is no longer an active 
and creative centre. "The lake has no outlet, and nor.e of the water it 
receives is passed on to areas that would make better use of it. Animals 
and plants are continually emigrating into the Lake Eyre basin from 
the surrounding highlands; but these reinforcements are insufficient to 
make good the internal waste. Great hordes of rabbits invade it, only 
to perish when the plains are stricken Avith drought. Mobs of cattle 
are driven on to its pastures, too often to die, overwhelmed by dust- 
storms or miserably bogged in the mud of the drying waterholes. The 
insatiable desert now produces little new ; its plants and animals are 
few in number and in kind, and they are stunted in their individual 
growth." At one time, according to Dr. Gregory, the area of the 
lake was three times as large as it is now ; great kangaroos and 
wombats as Avell as wallabies, bandicoots, and marsupial rats inhabited 
its shores, and crocodiles and huge mudfish its waters. " But 
the rainfall dwindled, the water-level sank, and the lake decreased in 
size. The discharge from the lake was no longer sufficient to keep 
open its channel, which the warping of the surface and the accumulation 
of debris continually tended to close. Accordingly Lake Eyre lost its 
outlet; its waters were henceforth removed only by evaporation; the 
salts, carried into the lake by the rivers, Avere concentrated, until the 
waters became salt and the fish and the crocodiles were all destroyed. 
As the lake shrank in area, less and less rain fell upon its shores; the 
vegetation withered ; the once green, succulent herbage was replaced by 
dry, spiny plants; the giant marsupials died of hunger and thirst; hot 
winds swept across the dusty plains, and the once fertile basin of Lake 
Eyre was blasted into desert." When did this drying up take place 1 
Dr. Gregory replies that it began early in the Pleistocene age. But the 
detailed evidence in support of this theory was too technical for the 
present work, and will doubtless be set forth in a future volume, where 
it will receive the attention to which it is unquestionably entitled. 

It was no holiday task then which Dr. Gregory and his associates 
had undertaken. The traditions of the Lake Eyre district are evil, and 
there was no doubt about the fact that the expedition had chosen a time 
of the year when the heat was at its worst. One old explorer wrote to 
the papers stating that to go to Lake Eyre at that time of the year was 
little short of madness. Meteorological statistics showed that the tempera- 
ture of the previous year had at one place varied between 118" and 


125° ia the shade, Uudeterred, however, by considerations of personal 
danger, the members of the expedition left Adelaide on the 13th 
December 1901, and after a two days' journey by rail they reached 
Hergott, some 440 miles from Adelaide, where they met their camels 
and their camp equipage, and where they got the first taste of the heat 
they were to endure. They had reached Hergott at the end of a heat 
wave and found the heat intense. It, however, seems to have no 
deleterious effects on the white population, the men of which were 
found, bronzed and tanned, in the best of health, " working in the open 
air at severe manual labour without adopting any precautions or special 
clothes." Oa this subject Dr. Gregory has some interesting remarks, 
viz. : " The tolerance of heat shown in this part of Australia certainly 
supports Sambon's theory with regard to acclimatisation. Sarabon 
holds that there is nothing to prevent Europeans living and working, 
as well as any black race, in the hottest of tropical localities. He 
maintains that the supposed unsuitability of the tropics for European 
settlement is due to disease and not to climate, and that as the special 
tropical diseases are due to germs, they may be cured or prevented when 
the life-histories of the germs are known. The sight of white men 
engaged in severe manual labour, under the midday sun in the hot 
climate of the Lake Eyre depression, certainly suggested that a ' White 
Australia ' is no impossible ideal for even the hottest regions of the 

Notwithstanding his having received much advice to the contrary, 
Dr, Gregory had decided that the means of transport for the expedition 
should be camels, and on the whole he had no reason to regret his 
decision. He found that " they carried their 6-cwt. loads with ease, 
except occasionally over bad sand-rises; they ate any food that came in 
their way, or fasted like philosophers when there was none. . . , They 
soon went for a couple of days without water, and, later on, would 
abstain for several days without suffering." From Hergott Springs 
the expedition proceeded north-eastwards to the missionary station of 
Kilalpanina, where they arrived in time for the Christmas festivities, 
celebrated by the Lutheran fathers in the German fashion so far as was 
practicable, and varied by corroborees performed by the junior members 
of the expedition to the undisguised amusement of the aborigines whom 
they found there. From Kilalpanina Dr. Gregory made a short expedi- 
tion to another mission station, Kopperamanna, in order to examine the 
country by which the Coaper river passes through the Desert Sandstone 
hills. He found that within a few miles of Kilalpanina the Cooper had 
no definite bed, but was a flood plain some eight to twelve miles in width 
with sharply defined flood-lines contracting to the east. Continuing 
his investigation east of the mission station, Dr. Gregory went as far 
as a knoll, from which he could see the main channel of the Cooper 
pass north of a ridge bearing an ominous name in the vernacular, signi- 
fying " the place of death and destruction." From what he saw where 
he stood on the knoll he was able to form an opinion as to the origin of 
the famous Stony Djsert, which Sturt had described as an ancient sea- 
bed Contravening this, Dr. Gregory tells us that the pebbles of the 


stony plains show no signs of the action of water. " The Stony- 
Desert, in fact, is due to the absence of water. The country where it 
occurs Avas once covered by a sheet of the rock known as Desert Sand- 
stone, in which there are abundant pebbles of quartz, sandstone, and 
other hard materials. The Desert Sandstone has slowly decayed under 
the action of the weather ; the loose sand has been blown away by the 
wind, and the hard fragments remain scattered over the ground. The 
Desert Sandstone once spread in a continuous sheet all across the Lake 
Eyre plains ; and wherever the waste from the Desert Sandstone has 
not been covered by later deposits, it litters the ground as the barren 
Stony Desert." Having satisfied himself on these points, Dr. Gregory 
returned to Kilalpanina, rejoined his companions and started westwards 
down the Cooper for Lake Eyre. In a few days they found quantities 
of stone flakes, which had been used by the aborigines as knives and 
scrapers, and in the bed of the Cooper they found fossil bones of 
kangaroo, bandicoot, crocodile, mudfish, and birds. On reaching the 
shores of the lake it was found to be practically dry, and as no fossils 
could be obtained, the party returned up the Cooper to the base camp 
at the waterhole at Markoni. Anticipating favourable weather, Dr. 
Gregory decided to march northwards across the fifty miles of Tirari 
desert to the Diamantina river, where he expected to find a sufl&cient 
supply of water. On the 11th January 1902, having given the camels 
a good drink and carefully filled the water-casks and bags, the party 
made a start on a most dreary expanse of sand-dunes, i.e. ridges of loam 
with a thin crust of white sand on each slope. Recalling one part of 
this journey, Dr. Gregory says, " I often loitered behind the caravans to 
get a wider view across the country. The soil was bare, the grass-tufts 
withered, and the scenery seen from the dune-crest was undeniably 
depressing, and the whole land looked dead. The few black stunted 
trees, with their gnarled trunks and leafless or needle-leafed boughs, had 
an appropriate resemblance to dead funereal cypress. The sides of the 
dune were covered by long wavy sand-ripples, where the wind had 
driven the grains up the western slope ; but at the same time not a 
sand grain was moving, and the ripples locked as motionless as the 
fossil ripple-marks that may be seen on some London paving-stones. 
The air was still and heavy — there was not a sound ; and the only 
visible sign of life and motion was the steady drift of the useless 
clouds across the leaden sky. Earth and sky seemed to be outvying 
each other in repellent monotony. The earth was repulsive in its arid, 
forlorn barrenness, and the sky was still more repulsive in its sunless 
pall of cloud." 

On reaching the station of Kalamurina the expedition were dis- 
appointed to find it had been deserted, but a good supply of fresh wat«r 
was found in a pool of the bed of the Diamantina, and the general appear- 
ance of the country indicated that there need be no fear of a failure of 
water. A second disappointment at Kalamurina was that no fosnl 
remains could be found there owing to a flood up the river, which some 
months before had covered them with silt. As a recompense, however, 
Dr Gregory found it "the best zoological and botanical collecting ground' 



we had yet visited," and accordingly a halt was made there for some 
days, which Dr. Gregory utilised in making an expedition up the valley 
of the Diamantina to the east for the purpose of studying the geology 
of the tract. He Avas fortunate also in finding some interesting fossils. 
Had there been abundance of time a much longer period could have been 
spent very profitably at Kalamurina and its vicinity, but the train to 
Hergott, which it was imperative the expedition should catch, ran only 
07ice a fortnight, and so it was necessary to proceed onwards without 
further delay. They followed the course of the Diamantina westwards 
for fifty miles, of which Dr. Gregory writes : " The scenery was full of 
variety and often beautiful. The river passed below cliffs of marl, 
crowded with large gypsum crystals, whose faces flashed in the sunlight 
like plates of silver. Elsewhere the river channel was bounded by high 
bluffs of bedded loam ; and from their summits we enjoyed fine views of 
long serpentine reaches of salt water, entrenched in the broad river-bed. 
Additional interest was given to these salt-pools by the swarms of birds 
that frequented them — swans, shags, pelicans, goliah-parrots, and sea- 
gulls." At the end of the fifty miles they reached Poonaranni, the last 
outpost of the stations along the Queensland Road on the eastern side of 
Lake Eyre ; and from there they had to make their way along the 
northern side of the lake through country of which very little was 
known, till they reached the stations along the Overland Route on the 
west of the lake. In the course of this march they had to cross the 
Kallakoopah and Makumba rivers. Had they been able to procure 
local guides from among the few aborigines whom they met, their 
difficulties would have been much lessened, but unfortunately, on the 
one occasion when they found some of the natives, the blacks fled away 
in dismay when the white men appeared. The difficulties, however, of 
the region which had to be travelled over, turned out to be not so for- 
midable as was anticipated ; and when, about half-way across, the party 
had the good fortune to pick up a native who was a friend of one of 
their guides, they soon reached Peak station on the west of the lake, 
where they arrived just in time to witness part of a corroboree, a very 
interesting description of which is given in another part of the book. 
From Peak station a night march took them to Warrina, where they 
caught the fortnightly train to Adelaide and brought to a conclusion a 
very arduous and successful expedition. The publication in detail of 
the scientific results will be awaited with much interest. 

In this volume Dr. Gregory discusses with much acumen and con- 
spicuous impartiality several questions, the interest and importaiice 
of which are not confined to Australia. For example, in the course of 
his travels he came across a good number of aborigines of various tribes, 
and evidently spared no trouble in studying and investigating their 
origin, condition, and capacities. He formed on the whole a kindly 
and favourable opinion of them, a ^qw words of which may be quoted. 
"Instead of finding them degraded, lazy, selfish, savage, they were 
courteous and intelligent, generous even to the point of imprudence, and 
phenomenally honest; while in the field they proved to be burn 
naturalists and superb bushmen. . . . Before our stay at Kilalpanina 


had come to an end, we all shared the feeling, that of all the quaint 
delusions concerning Australia, the quaintest is that which represents its 
aborigines as the most useless and untrainable of savages." In another 
passage he refers to their affection for their children and care for the 
aged and infirm members of the tribe, and to their unusual receptivity 
of education. With regard to the vexed question of their antiquity, 
he impugns the theories of Barton and Dr. Lang, and on a careful con- 
sideration of their skulls and physical features, and still more of their 
type of mind, he has come to the conclusion that the aborigines of 
Australia belong to the Caucasian section of the human race. 

It was inevitable that in a work on the "Dead Heart of Australia" 
Dr. Gregory should have much to say about its climatic conditions and 
water-supply ; and indeed the last quarter of this book is devoted to this 
subject, the interest and importance of which to Australia are very 
obvious. It was only in the year 1880 that the existence of an Artesian 
supply of water was discovered and realised, and now Artesian wells are 
fairly numerous, especially in Queensland, but they have not been nearly 
so successful or profitable as was anticipated. For this there are two 
causes : the one, the excessive soakage and evaporation, which account 
for a very large proportion of the water which reaches the surface; the 
other, the highly saline quality of the water in many places, which tends 
in a comparatively short time to destroy the fertility of the soil. Thus 
it comes about that the principal use of the Artesian wells is merely to 
provide water for cattle on the stock routes through deserts. But of 
late years the Artesian theory has been much discredited and is now 
fast giving way to the Plutonic theory, which is based on the distribu- 
tion of the water, the variations and pulsations of its pressure, and its 
chemical qualities. We must refer our readers who are interested in this 
subject to the lucid and thoughtful exposition of it which they will find 
in this book. Dr. Gregory gives good reasons for believing that the 
supply of subterranean water is limited, and that the unnecessary waste 
of it which is now going on is in the last degree impolitic and should 
be prohibited by legislation. In his last chapter he discusses the pro- 
posal to flood Lake Eyre from the sea, a fascinating but impracticable 
idea which took shape in 1883, some six years after the fantastic pro- 
posal to Hood the Sahara of Africa from the ^Mediterranean. The idea to 
flood Lake Eyre was revived about a dozen years ago, and rough estimates 
of its initial cost were prepared. The}- amounted to the prohibitive sum of 
£740,000,000, to which had to be added an enormous sum for cost of 
maintenance. It was also calculated that in thirty years, owing to 
evaporation, which goes on at the rate of 100 inches per annum, 
the whole bed of the lake would be filled with salt. The project was 
accordingly abandoned, probably for ever. 

But it is impossible, within the limits of our space, to give even a 
summary of the information Dr. Gregory has collected and laid before 
his readers on these and other highly important topics, or the reasoning 
for the conclusions at which he has arrived. We have, however, said 
enough to recommend this very interesting work to our readers. We 
must add that the author's style, even when dealing with scientific matters, 


is crisp and lucid, bright and often humorous — the style of a master of 
his subject, who writes with all the confidence and clearness gained by 
experience and conscientious study, and thus commands and receives 
the sustained and interested attention of his readers. The photographs 
which illustrate the work are good, and there are also a couple of maps 
which contribute materially to the convenience of the reader. 


1. Amonw the papers of which advance copies were distributed to the 
members of the International Geological Congress in Mexico is one by 
Mr. J. G. Aguilera (Director of the Mexican Geological Institute), entitled 
" Les Volcans du Mexique dans leurs relations avec le relief et la 
tectonique g^n^rale du pays." It is accompanied by a map, on the scale 
of -,,,55^ or 78"9 miles to 1 inch, on which all the volcanoes known 
to him are shown (so far as the scale permits). There is a curious 
omission on the map, viz. the volcano of Tuxtla, SE. of Vera Cruz, 
although it is thrice mentioned in the text. The map also shows the 
chief faults, lines of fracture, and lines of plication of the strata, and is 
accompanied by a corresponding map on tracing paper showing the 
position and direction of the mountain chains and the distribution of 

The author points out that the volcanic rocks occur chiefly in the 
western half of the country, and are only sporadic in the east, except in 
the region where the states of Vera Cruz, Puebla, and Hidalgo meet. 
Tne volcanic rocks belong principally to three types — andesites, rhyo- 
lites, and basalts. Generally speaking, the andesites were extruded 
first, then the rhyolites, and lastly the basalts, though there are excep- 
tions to this order. The andesites were usually erupted through vents 
(" cheminees "), hence by crater eruptions, although fissure eruptions are 
not rare. The rhyolites, on the contrary, were the result of fissure 
eruptions, with the exception of the Pico do Bernal, NE. of Qaeretaro, 
and one or two others in the state of Queretaro. The basalts were 
almost exclusively the product of crater eruptions. 

Vulcanism, which probably began to manifest itself in the Eocene, 
has continued to the present day with generally decreasing energy. 
Contrary to the common idea that the Mexican volcanoes are near the 
se I, almost all of them are in reality very far from it. The coastal 
volcanoes are few, namely, those of Mexican Lower California, of Tepic 
territory, Ouietepec in the state of Guerrero, Tuxtla in the state of Vera 
Cruz, and one or two others. 

The Mexican volcanic arc is parallel to the Western Sierra Madre, 
anil the volcanoes are more numerous on the eastern side of that range, 
that is, towards the Central Plateau ; they are also irregularly distributed 
over the plateau, and are few in number in the Eastern Sierra Madre, 
su;h as occur there being almost all on its side turned towards the 
plateau (except Tuxtla). 

There are two predominant directions of faults, fractures, and folds in 


Mexico; firstly, from NW. to SE., and secondly, from XE. to SAV. : the 
latter is less constant than the former. A third less frequent direction 
is east and west. The volcanic manifestations have taken place in lines 
parallel to the mountain folds. The mineral vein.';, which owe their 
origin to the volcanic rocks, exhibit very constantly a parallelism to the 
lines of relief. 

Mr. Aguilera claims to have demonstrated ^ that the volcanic fissure 
of Humboldt,- which Felix and Lenk also suppose to be a transverse 
fracture situated on the southern margin of the Central Plateau (Mesa 
Central), the border itself being a manifestation of the fissure, does not 
really exist, and that the valley of the Rio de las Balsas is a valley of 
erosion posterior in date of formation to the volcanoes of the Cential 

The seismic zones of Mexico are not situated in the volcanic zones, 
but on the contrary they occur in regions where there are no volcanoes. 
The seismic area is situated in the most ancient part of the country 
where one might have expected great stability ; it is in the region of 
Archaean rocks. 

2. The Volcano of Nauhcampatepetl or Cofre de Piwte. — In the Bole fin 
de la Sociedad Geohkjica Mexicana, tomo i. (1904), pp. 151 to 168, is a 
paper in Spanish, by Mr. Ezequiel Ordonez, entitled " El Nauhcampatepetl 
6 Cofre de Perote," in which the extinct volcano situated N. lat. 19° 29' 
and W. long. 97° 12' is described, with four views. It owes its names, 
Cofre de Perote and Nauhcampatepetl (from Mexican Nauhcampa, four- 
sided ; tepetl, mountain) to the coff'er-like vestige of a lava bed, in the foim 
of a flattened rectangular prism, with an estimated length of 300 meties, 
a height of 25 metres at its eastern, and 40 metres at its western end, 
which forms its summit. Its altitude is 4282 metres (14,048 ft), though 
the Mesa Central at its western foot reaches 2400 metres (7874 ft.). 
The summit does not reach the snowline, but the limit of arborescent 
vegetation on the western side is at 385 metres (12,628 ft.). The 
mountain consists of numerous superposed massive beds of lava, inclined 
in the same direction as the slope of the mountain sides and separated 
by beds of agglomerate, or by brecciform rocks, indicating that the 
heated overlying lava-stream produced a re-fusion in the underlying 
already cold bed ; in other cases the lava beds appear to be fused ^ith 
one another. Some half-melted lava masses were, however, ejected by 

^ Aguilera, "Sobre las condkiones tecnicas de la RepuWica Mexicana," in the Anvario 
de la Acad. Mex. de Ciencias Exactas, Naturales, vol. iv. pp. 103-104 (19C0). I 
have not seen this paper. Dr. Eniilio, chief geologist of the Mexican Geological 
In.stitute, maintains the same view in the chapter "On the Origin of the Mexican Mesa 
Central," in Bulletin No. 13 of that Institute, entitled Geulogio. de los Al rededores de Orizaba 
(1899). He says (translation), p. 49, "The Mesa Central of Mexico is a completely 
secondary phenomenon and is not to be attributed to great lateral fractures (it is not a 
' Horst ' [area left above its surroundings by circumjacent depression]), but was formed by 
the filling up of the mo-st [elevated valleys of the ancient mountain mass by masses of 
eruptive. rocks, volcanic sands and modeni alluvia." 

2 See Cosmos, Bohn's edition, 1849, vol. i. p. 238, where Humboldt states that Orizaba, 
Popocatepetl, Jornllo, and C'olima "are situated in a transverse fissure running from sea 
to sea." 


small apertures on the flanks of the great cone foiming small conical 
domes near the "llano de los Pozitos " at 3000 metres. The lava 
streams succeeded one another with such rapidity that it would be im- 
possible to establish any chronological distinction between them. They 
appear to belong to a single period of eruption. One's chief preoccupation 
on arriving at the summit of Nauhcampatepetl is to discover the vent 
from which so enormous a mass of lavas has been extruded, since no 
complete crater exists, and in this respect, and in the mode of occurrence 
of the lavas, the mountain greatly resembles Ixtaccihuatl. Between the 
summit proper and a peak which Ordonez terms Pico de Mitancingo, 
hardly 500 metres distant and of almost the same height, is a deep 
cavity open to the east in the form of an inverted half-cone, called the 
Potrero de las Viboras. While the lavas of the summit are slightly 
inclined to the west, those surrounding the Potrero have a contrary 
inclination. Hence Ordonez is inclined to regard the Potrero as the 
place of exit of the lavas, although for such a vent it is very narrow. 
The general impression that one obtains on visiting the volcano is that 
of a mountain in ruins. The lavas are hypersthene andesites,^ the 
porphyritic constituents being labradorite, andesine, hypersthene, and 
augite, and the ground-mass consisting of more or less devitrified glass 
with microlites of oligoclase, augite and black iron ore. 

After a long period of repose volcanic activity was resumed, not by 
the ancient vent, probably closed for ever, but at numerous points on 
the eastern side of the mountain, and more basic basaltic lavas were 
poured out from numerous well-formed scoria cones. 

Ord6iiez holds that the great volcanoes of Mexico, in spite of their 
size and altitude, are the results of the localisation and subdivision 
(owing to the consumption of material and energy) of a great internal 
reservoir of magma, which began to reach the surface at the beginning 
of the Miocene. As a proof of this, he mentions that certain Mexican 
volcanic sierras are formed in great part of one single type of eruptive 
material without sudden changes of composition. These homogeneous 
sierras do not exhibit a structure indicating a formation or growth due to 
successive accumulations of lava, but were formed at one eruption ; they 
are elongated as if they had been formed along fissures. On the flanks 
and extremities of these masses we meet with monogenic volcanoes, com- 
posed of successive beds of lava, volcanoes of suddenly arrested activity, 
to which type he refers Cofre de Perote. Lastly, we have the great cones, 
also built up of beds of lava, but in which the diminished volcanic 
activity manifested itself for a long time intermittently and with a great 
number of explosive eruptions, during which the old lava fields and the 
extensive lakes of the neighbouring valleys were covered with thick beds 
of volcanic dust and pumice. The volcanoes of the second type exhibit 
summits of crestlike form, as two examples of Avhich we have Nauhcam- 
patepetl and Ixtaccihuatl, each of them contiguous to a magnificent 
cone of the third type, namely the Peak of Orizaba (Citlaltepetl) and 
Popocatepetl. Bernard Hobson. 

1 In Professor J. C. Russell's Volcanoes of North America (1897), p. 186, they are called 
dioritic trachytes. 



Thk title of this book inverts the order of the contents. Wliat is called 
" The British Borderland " naturally comes first, and Tibet across its 
border follows. The author is the Deputy Commissioner, or chief civil 
officer, of the British Hill District of Kumaon, and the book is the 
result of a journey made by him and Dr. Longstaff from Almora, the 
district capital, along the eastern frontier of the district by the Kali 
Valley and over the Lipu Lekh Pass into the adjacent parts of Tibet. 
The return into Kumaon was made over the passes on the western 
frontier of the district which lead into the Milam Valley. 

Kumaon, with the contiguous district of British Garhwal on the 
west, was ceded to the British in 1816 after the Gurkha War. It has 
thus been under British administration for ninety years, and is a district 
well known to and much visited by British residents in Northern 
India. It has also been the subject of many official reports. To this 
day the most notable of these are the reports of its first British adminis- 
trator, Mr. G. W. Traill, of the Bengal Civil Service. They were 
written in 1823 and 1825, and were republished with Government 
sanction by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in volumes xvi. and xvii. of 
The Asiatic Researches. They are the basis or contain the gist of most 
of what has since been recorded officially or otherwise regarding 
Kumaon. But it has remained to the author of the book before us to 
describe parts of the district in a popular way, filling in many interest- 
ing details, and above all to put his contribution into a pleasing (if 
tviighti/) form by means of an almost innumerable collection of beautiful 

The orographical features of Kumaon and Garhwal, as of other parts 
of the Himala3'an region, are striking. The districts in rough outline 
make up a parallelogram about one hundred and twenty miles in length 
and one hundred in depth, abutting on the east upon Nepal, and 
facing to the south-west the alluvial plains of the Gangetic valley, 
which at the base of the mountains may be said to have an average 
elevation of about twelve hundred feet above the sea-level, and to 
the north-east the plains of south-western Tibet, the average eleva- 
tion of which may be put at 14,000 feet. The ranges by which the 
districts are traversed trend mainly from north-west to south-east, as 
do the ranges that run through the Tibetan plateau. The main axis 
or watershed lies to the north close to the southern border of the 
Tibetan plateau. Along the watershed, and connected with it by spurs 
projecting mostly to the south, are the snowy ranges ("The Snows") 
of this part of the Himalayas, knotted here and there into groups 

1 Westei')i Tib'A a>id the British Borderland, the Sacred Country of Hindus and 
BuMhists, with an Axount of the Oovernmtnt, Religion, and Customs of its Peoples. 
By Charles A. Sherring, M.A., F.R.G.S. With a chapter by T. G. Longstaff, M.B., 
F.R.G.S., describing an attempt to climb Gurla Mandhata. With Illustrations and Maps. 
London : Edward Arnold, 1906. Price 21s. 7iet. 


of peaks, over 20,000 feet, some of which are among the highest, 
and present scenery of snow-field and precipice as giand as any 
in the world. It is this lofty region, with the valleys, having an 
elevation ranging from 10,000 to 14,000 feet, that are enfolded in 
it, that is " The Borderland " of this book. It is called Bhote by 
the people of Kiimaon, and its inhabitants are Bhotias. The ranges 
which traverse the middle and southern parts of Kumaon are much 
lower, averaging in height from 5000 to 9000 feet; and they are, 
except during short periods in the winter, snowless. 

The streams which pass down the larger valleys between the ranges 
throughout Kumaon-Garhwal mostly issue from glaciers in the snowy 
ranges. A number of these glaciers are of great size, and they descend 
to 12,000 or 13,000 feet above the sea-level and about 3000 feet 
below the permanent snow-line. The streams are shed off' in channels 
of steep gradient, at first mostly towards the south-east or south-west, 
till they turn the flanks of the ranges through deep and precipitous 
gorges, the first excavation of Avhich is possibly as old or older than the 
beginning of the elevation of the folds of slowly rising land out of which 
the ridges themselves took form. Their rapidly flowing waters then find 
their way southward into the Indian plains. None of these streams, not 
even the headwaters of the great Ganges itself, have their sources to the 
north of the Kumaon-Garhwal watershed. In this respect they difl^er 
from the Indus and Sutlej to the west, and the Kurnjili and a few other 
of the great eastern affluents of the Ganges, as v/ell as the great 
Brahmaputra, to the east. The Kumaon valleys lying south of the 
snowy ranges are for the most part narrow and deep, with precipitous 
forest-clad sides rising abruptly from the level of the river-bed, especi- 
ally on the northern sides which face southwards. Those within the 
snowy ranges, after being entered from the southward through steep and 
difficult passes, are found sometimes to open out into wide treeless 
stretches of pasture land with comparatively easy gradients overtopped 
by bare scree and crag ; while the slopes on the northern side of the 
watershed gradually fall away in expanding and comparatively short 
valleys into the Tibetan plateau. The region south of the snowy ranges 
is one drenched by the periodical rains of India, and cut back by the 
channels of -violently rushing rivers and streams of high incline. That 
within and beyond them is sheltered from violent and excessive rain- 
fall, and no part of it lies at an altitude very much below the sources of 
its streams. Therein lie the chief immediate factors in the evolution of 
their present physiographical condition. 

The part of Tibet's vast area which lies to the north of the Kumaon 
mountains is its south-western corner, called by the inhabitants Nari 
Khorsum, and known to the people on the British side of the frontier 
as Hundes. Its extent may be put at from 20,000 to 25,000 Kjuaie 
miles. It has been re ore or less visited by Europeans since early in 
last century ; and a good deal of information about its physiography 
and people has been collected by various travellers, and gathered from 
British Hill subjects trading with its inhabitants. An account of the 
adventurous journey of Moorcroft and Hearsey in 1812 (before Kumaon 


or any other Hill district had come into British hands) was published 
in 1816; aad an account, well worthy of being put on record, more 
especially for its scientific value.of a journey made in 1848 by Sir Richard 
Strajhey and Air. J. E. Wiaterbottom, has in recent years been printed 
in volume xv. of the Geographical Journal of London. The journey was 
one of three journeys into Tibet during 1846-19, in which Sir R. Strachey 
or his brother, Henry Strachey, took part. And in 1866-68 extensive 
explorations were made by Pandit Nain Singh of the Indian Survey, 
w!io penetrated to the gold diggings of Thok Jalung on the north-west 
confines of Nari. But it has to be noted that, with the exception 
of that of Moorcroft and Hearsay, the visits of travellers and 
sportsmen to Xari were made by stealth, or in defiance of the local 
Tibetan officials; and therefore at some disadvantage for purposes 
of inquiry and observation. The outstanding feature of the Tibetan 
journey described in this book is that it was made openly, presumably 
with the sanction and support of the Indian Government, and* with 
the consent of the Tibetan officials, lay and ecclesiastical. The author 
visited the headquarters of the Tibetan officials, which are also the trading 
marts, from Taklakote below the Lipu L3kh Pass to Gartok in the west, 
and was permitted to enter and inspect the monasteries and temples on 
the route. The latter, no European, as far as is known, had ever before 
entered or even approached. If therefore the author has not as an 
original explorer added to our knowledge of the general geography of 
Nari, he has been able to verify and fill in much detail, and to illustrate his 
narrative and observations with a great wealth of admirable and apposite 
pictures. After all, the main objects of his journey were not so much 
geographical, as the initiation of friendly and confidential relations with 
the Tibetans and of commercial and other communications between 
India and Nari. In this object, by his tact and kindly bearing, he 
seems to have been very successful. 

The physical features of Nari are as uniform as those of Kumaon are 
varied. It is as a whole a stone-covered, wind-swept, nearly rainless 
plateau, lying about 14,000 feet above the sea-level. Along the rivers 
whence irrigation is possible the soil is under cultivation ; elsewhere the 
land is only capable of supporting the flocks and herds of the scanty 
nomads. Mineral wealth, including gold, it possesses. But borax and 
salt are the only such products which have in the recent past been to 
any extent material of foreign commerce. The gold has always gone 
to Lhasa and Pekin. 

Nari is intersected from north-west to south-east by hill-ranges at an 
elevation of 2000 or 3000 feet above the plain. In, or as off-sets, of these 
ranges there arise in some places groups of massive peaks reaching 3000 or 
4000 feet more. Such are Kailas and Gurla Mandhata,an account of Dr. 
Longstaff's plucky attempt to scale the latter of which forms one of the 
chapters of this book. They are situated on the eastern limit of Nari, and 
are part of tlie watershed on the eastern side of which rise the headwaters 
of the Brdhmaputra, and on the southern and western those of the 
Kurndii, the Sutlej, and the southern branch of the upper Indus. In 
themselves, as compared with the Himalayan snowy groups, Kailas and 


Gurla, with the liakshas and Mansarovar Lakes at their foot, seem to 
present no very special features of mysterious grandeur or beauty. 
Tiieir place in Hindu and Buddhist mytli and theogony is jiossibly due 
to their position, hid away from the known world of Hindustan and the 
Panjab, behind the all but impenetrable barrier of the Himalayas, on 
the confines of an unknown and ghostly country. It may be doubted 
whether to the Hindu of to-day they, as places of pilgrimage, very 
strongly appeal. For they have no Hindu shrines, and passing beyond 
Ke larnath and Badrinath in the Garliwal mountains, shrines at which 
priests summoned from Southern India minister, the pilgrim enters a 
foreign and inhospitable land which now knows not (if it ever did) 
Shiva and Vishnu, and where none of their votaries are present to 
receive and apply votive offerings and call forth the rapture of the 
worshipper. Comparatively few, therefore, of the hill-going pilgrims 
pass into these higher regions, and it is questionable whether, even 
with an open and safe Tibet, the throng will ever be great. In its 
religious aspect as affecting India the author seems, in a Avord, to over- 
estimate the importance of Nari. 

^yho were the earliest human occupants of the Kumaon Hills has 
not been proved. Possibly survivals of them may be seen in the 
Rajis or Eawuts (the Forest-men) living near Askot, and in the servile 
Doms or Dumras to be found throughout Kumaon south of the water- 
shed. These are not Aryan by race ; nor, apparently, are they 
mongoloid, of the type found in Bhote. Their affinities may possibly 
be found to be with some of the so-called aboriginal tribes of north- 
eastern India, whence, in that case, they entered the hills. Super- 
imposed upon this lower stratum of i^oiJulation, except in Bhote, is 
the great body of Hindus known in Kumaon as Khasias. They 
are divided into various castes and have various traditions as to the 
places of their origin. They speak and write a dialect of the Hindi 
language, and their general social economy is that of the Aryan peoples 
of the plains of north-western India. Their ostensible religion also is 
the ordinary Brahminical cult of the Indian continent, inwoven here as 
there into a texture of local spirit and ancestor-worship, which in 
reality dominates their lives far more than the priestly cult does. 
Among them are scattered families of bluer blood, the descendants or 
survivals of high-caste families who, probably more recently than the 
Khasias, came from the Indian plains and gained predominance, general 
or local, over the hill-dwellers. For instance, a dynasty of Surajbans 
(solar) Rajputs known as the Katur, is said to have once ruled Kumaon ; 
and within recent historic times the Raja of Kumaon was a Chandarbans 
(lunar) Rajput, whose remote ancestors were said to have lived in the 
Gangetic Doab. The Rajbar of Askot spoken of in this book is also a 
Surajbans, and socially superior to the surrounding Khasian Hindus. 

It is wholly different with the upper stratum of population in Bhote. 
That seems to be mongoloid and to have entered its present seats from 
the north. As a fact Bhote was formerly part of the kingdom of Tibet 
and was conquered by the Rajas of Kumaon and Garhwal well within 
historic times. The north-eastern corner was perhaps never fully 


subject to the Hindus of Kumaon, and was only incorporated in that 
principality when in 1791 A.d. it ^vas overrun by the Gurkhas, by whom 
it was ceded to the British twenty-five years later. To this day (or at 
any rate till quite recently) the Bhotias, although British subjects dwell- 
ing in British territory, continue to acknoAvledge Tibetan suzerainty by 
the payment of certain taxes, the enforcement of Avhich is secured by 
their trading interests in Tibet. 

How closely the Bhotias are akin by descent to the existing tribes 
of Nari is not clear. The dialects spoken by them are apparently related 
to those used there. But socially and religiously the Bhotias are far 
parted from the Tibetans. "While the latter are Lamaists and Shamanists, 
overridden by priests and wizards, and cursed with the custom of 
polyandry, the former are not. Their ancestral customs and beliei's, 
some of which are minutely described in this book, have probably 
been best preserved by the eastern clans. These exhibit a social 
condition which, if not highly moral, is yet singularly free from 
the demands and restrictions that burden and repress the Hindu, 
and from the abject submission to priestcraft and demonology that 
prevails in Nari. They worship they know not what at little rude 
shrines adorned with prayer flags; and the essence of their religion 
seems to be the fear and appeasement of countless spirits and phantoms, 
including the spirits of their ancestors. But between the worshipper and 
the Unseen no professional human intermediary is employed; and ghosts 
notwithstanding, they are a light-hearted and cheerful people, as well 
as industrious and energetic. It is truly remarkable that this small 
body of eastern Bhotias should have preserved, as they have done, 
their primitive customs and traditional beliefs alike against Hindu and 

The case of the western Bhotias is otherwise. They afford another 
instance of what has frequently been observed in India, namely the 
gradual absorption of non-Aryan tribes into the ranks of Brahmanism 
(see Sir Alfred Lyall's Asiafic Studies, 1st series, chapter v.). Why the 
Bhotias remained outside Buddhism when their neighbours and rulers 
in Nari became Buddhists, and the influences of Brahmanism have 
been more potent in western than in eastern Bhote, is not fully 
apparent. Doubtless the western Bhotias have been associated with 
Hindus during the last two hundred years or longer, more closely 
than their eastern brethren; they are certainly nearer to the great 
places and routes of Hill pilgrimage. They are now, in fact, a more 
civilised and polished community than the eastern Bhotias. From 
among them have sprung two at least of the best of the Indian 
Government's native explorers and surveyors — Nain Singh (" A ") and 
Kishna Singh ("A. K."), both of whom are natives of Milam. The 
opportunities of these men have been exceptional. But they are 
samples of the mental and moral capacity to be found in the remote 
Bhotia glens. 

The energy of the Bhotias find their exercise in trade. The 
practical monopoly of the traffic across the Kumaon and Garhwal 
passes is in Bhotian hands, under strictly regulated arrangements among 


themselves and their Tibetan correspondents. It is carried on by packs 
upon the backs of sheep, goats, and cross and thoroughbred yaks, by 
which are transported the grain, sugar, cloths, and hardware (exports from 
India), and the salt, borax, and wool (imports into India), which form its 
staples. The value of the exports and imports is comparatively small, 
and is not likely, for a long time to come, to become very great. But 
the trade is worthy of encouragement as giving employment to the 
labour and capital of a sturdy and enterprising, as Avell as loyal, race of 
traders and carriers, who are capable also of becoming one of the vehicles 
of British influence in Tibet. 

The kinship of the people of Nari to the mongoloid races of Central 
Asia seems to lie rather in the direction of Burma and south-western 
China than on the other hand northwards in the direction of Tartary 
and Mongolia. It is known, too, that between India and Tibet, includ- 
ing Nari, there was considerable communication in past ages ; and 
whatever may have been the case with Tantrism, Buddhism entered Tibet 
from India. The primitive cult of the country was no doubt demonology, 
in contact with which the imported Buddhism probably degenerated more 
and more from the original Indian doctrine and practice. It seems 
unlikely that much early intercourse between India and Nari took place 
over the Kumaon and Garhwal passes. It was carried on chiefly from 
the west along the valleys of the Indus and the Sutlej, a line of 
access which the Mongol invasion of Mirza Haidar in the sixteenth 
century and the Sikh expedition of 184-1 showed to be practicable. 
But for a long period under the Lhasa Government Nari has been a 
closed country against India. That the people themselves have no 
antagonism or aversion to the foreigner from the south is plainly seen 
from this book ; and official obstruction having been removed, develop- 
ment of intercourse with India, to the advantage of the people of Nari 
as well as of our own traders, becomes possible and likely. Eude and 
barbarous as they are, the people seem to be characterised by certain 
robust and improvable qualities. Their country is, however, limited in 
resources and thinly populated ; and they are ruled by an unenlightened 
and greedy hierocracy and ofiicialdom. A great and rapid improvement 
in the condition and affairs, commercial or other, of Nari cannot reason- 
ably be looked for. Yet such expeditions as that of which this book 
contains the record cannot fail to accomplish a little towards the 
desirable end. 


(With Map and Illustration.) 

Men of business and travellers, whose calling takes them to the Straits 
Settlements either as settlers or in passing through, are brought into 
intimate association with the Malay. It is true that the bulk of the 

1 Pagan Races of the Malay Peninsula, by W. W. Skeat and C. 0. Blagden. London : 
Macmillan and Co., 1906. In two volumes. With numerous illustrations. Price 425. net. 


commerce, both wholesale and retai), not in the hands of the European, 
is conducted by Chinese, but the Malay is constantly in evidence. He 
oftentimes acts as your servant, he is messenger from office to office ; 
he is an expert fisher and boatman. He is a Mohamm.edan by religion, 
and is, as a rule, very much a gentleman. We have nothing to do with 
him for the present ; he is not one of the pagan races. But the European 
is made vaguely aware by hearsay of the existence of another race or 
races of people who inhabit the mainland of the Peninsula, and the 
seacoast ; an inferior type, more or less dwarfed in stature, who live in 
the depths of the jungle, feeding on roots and on the prey of their 
blow-pipes, very primitive and exceedingly shy. If the traveller takes a 
journey into the interior, the chances are that he will see here and there 
a dim form flitting among the shadows of the forest trees, an indefinite 
something which whisks away into nothing. " Orang Jakun, Tuan," 
(" Jakun, Sir"), his guide will tell him, and he probably dismisses him 
from his mind as one of the Aborigines, and if he is a collector, he may 
wonder whether he can effect a deal for the aboriginal weapons. This 
practically sums up the knowledge which the ordinary European has 
of these very interesting peoples who are found in the country called 
the Federated Malay States, and in the islands around. Rudyard 
Kipling, in Many Inventions and under the title of " The Disturber of 
the Traffic," introduces one variety of the Jakun, the Orang Laut, an 
astonishingly primitive variety who live on the sea. " You cannot drown 
an Orange-Lord, not even in Flores Strait on flood time." Laut, how- 
ever, is pronounced like our Lout. 

There has always been, since the commencement of our domination, 
a small band of earnest scientists who have made a study of the Malay 
and of these primitive peoples. The copious bibliography published in 
the volumes under revieAv is ample evidence of this ; the names of 
J. R. Logan, Crawfurd, and Thomas Braddell are intimately associated 
with that mine of lore, the Journal of the Indian Archipelago, and indeed 
it would be invidious to make a selection from the roll of distinguished 
names. Not the least interesting to us will be that of Nelson Annandale, 
Research Student in Anthropology at the University of Edinburgh, who, 
as Mr. Skeat says, first broke ground in the Peninsula as a member 
of the Cambridge Expedition of 1899, and has from time to time 
published the results of his investigations in the Fasciculi Malayenses. 
And now Mr. W. W. Skeat and Mr. Blagden have given us the outcome 
of years of study, of arduous journeys and intimate personal knowledge, 
in this monumental work. Mr. Skeat must rank among the foremost 
of living Malay scholars and students of the races of the Peninsula, and 
has already established his reputation by his book on Malay Magic ; 
while Mr. Blagden is responsible for the chapter on the Language 
question, and for the Comparative Vocabulary — in some ways the most 
important part of the work. 

As the preface indicates, the book is in the nature of a compilation 
from many sources, with the addition of much original matter ; and it is 
obvious that not only the various chapters, but even sections of chapters, 
have been written independently and at different times, the result being 


occasional " overlapping " of information ; but this is not a disadvantage, 

Mixed Jakuu type, Bukit Prual, Selaugor. 

for one must look on the book rather as an encyclopEedia in which the 
reader will find each heading complete in itself. 


Who, then, are these primitive peoples'? Whence did they corned 
There are three well-defined groups which inhabit the central backbone 
of the Peninsula, the most northerly being the Semang, more or less 
inland from Penang ; the Sakai, on a line from the Perak River ; and 
the Jakuns, a composite race dwelling anywhere between Malacca and 
Johore, and the islands beyond. Let us begin by admitting that all the 
theories held up to the present time are only tentative, and that there is 
a great field for the ethnologist ; only, as Mr. Skeat urges, let him be 
quick, for distinctive features are fast disappearing. The classification 
adopted is that of Professor Eudolf Martin of Zurich, who has taken 
the hair as a standard. The only modification which Skeat has made 
has been to add a standard for the Jakuns. Thus : 

Group 1. Ulotrichi, or woolly-haired tribes. Semang. 
Group 2. Cymotrichi, or wavy-haired tribes. Sakai. 
Group 3. Lissotrichi, or smooth-haired tribes. Jakun and Orang 

The Semang or Negrito is brachycephalic, and in his characteristics 
is allied to the Philippine negrito, the Andamanese, and the African 
Pigmies. It has been fairly well established that he is in no way 
connected either with the Papuan or the African negro. He has two 
other characteristics ; he uses the bow and arrow in place of the blow- 
pipe, and he builds his huts or shelters on the ground, and not in 

The Sahii, on the other hand, is dolichocephalic. There are two 
theories to account for his origin. One lately advanced by Schmidt 
seeks to identify him with the Mon-Annam group, an Indo-Chinese 
source to which we shall refer later. The other, Avhich has the authority 
of Virchow, suggests that the Sakai is allied to the Vedda, Tamil, 
Korumba, and Australian races, and may be styled the Dravido- 
Australian theory. He uses the blow-pipe, a beautifully made instru- 
ment, and he builds in trees, or, at any rate, at a height from the 

The Jakun, again, is brachycephalic. He belongs to a less well-defined 
group, consisting of tribes partly aboriginal Malayan, partly Semang, 
and partly Sakai. He is mongolian or mongoloid. 

In discussing the origin of these Pagan Races, it will perhaps clear 
the ground if we trace what is known of the past history of the dominant 
Malay race, with whom, as we have said, this work does not concern 
itself. Swettenham says, in British Malaya, page 144, "There are good 
reasons for believing that Malays are the descendants of people who 
crossed from the south of India to Sumatra, mixed with a people 
already inhabiting that island, and gradually spread themselves over 
the central and most fertile states. . . . From Sumatra they gradually 
worked their way to Java, to Singapore, and the Malay Peninsula," and so 
on. Our authors also say of these people, " The Malay language has been 
introduced into the Peninsula from Central Sumatra, where the Malay- 
speaking tribes were trained under Indian influences into a more or less 
civilised condition before they sent out the successive swarms of colonists 


who made new homes ... in the Peninsula " {Pagan Races, vol. ii. page 

434). It may be noted here that the word Malay is used to denote 


this Mohammedan importation from Sumatra, while the term Malayan 
signifies the aboriginal inhabitants of the Peninsula and the Archipelago, 
When, then, these Malays arrived on the coast, they found the country 
already occupied by the Pagan Races, whom they gradually drove into 
their jungle fastnesses. 

The problem which has concerned the ethnologist, and is still 
vexing him, is how to trace the origin of these peoples. If we examine 
the map of Asia, we see that, in the tendency of nations to overflow 
towards the south, the Peninsula is a natural resting-place. It acted as 
a breakwater against which the fury of the north-east monsoon expended 
itself, so that even the most primitive praus could coast down from 
India in comparatively calm water. Moreover, the monsoon, after 
having spent its force, brought down vessels of all sorts from the China 
side. In the Malay annals one reads of legends of this kind. In 
endeavouring to tell what is known of these migrations, we find our- 
selves in some difficulty, because the subject is still in suspense. There 
are no records of any kind, and the student has to be guided by race 
characteristics and by language. We are therefore brought face to face 
with the problem of the Mon-Annam languages, a study which is yet in 
its infancy, and which offers a very attractive field for research. The 
Mon-Annam or Mon-Khmer-Annam tribes coincide very much with what 
is now called Indo-China, From what distance north they originally 
came is not known, but it is thought that they spread out towards the 
north of India, Burma, and Indo- China generally. The reader is directed 
to the excellent sketch-map which we are permitted to reproduce here, 
by which he will understand far better than by any description how 
these allied tribes, arising in the north-east, spread towards the west and 
south, forming a rough segment of an arc, and established a linguistic 
and racial connection between the extreme west of the north-west 
provinces of India and the Malay Peninsula. Originally, before the 
Burmese and Siamese came from the north, these Mon-Annam races 
lived, the Monspeaking in Pegu, the Khmer in Camboga, and the Annam 
up in Tongking, but the Annamese came gradually down the east coast 
to where they are now. All this is excellently portrayed in the map. 
It is thought that when the Sumatra Malays arrived on the scene, they 
found that the Mon-Khmer races occupied the same relation to the 
aborigines as to-day the Malays do to the primitive tribes : they occupied 
the coast-line and generally the points of vantage ; they were slowly 
driven south by races coming after them ; and they, in their turn, 
partly assimilated and partly drove before them into the jungle, the 
races who are now there. 

And now the question arises. Are these pagan races of Mon-Annam 
origin or not? That is the problem. We are dealing as before with 
the Semang, Sakai, and Jakuns. The Semang or Negritoes are frankly 
uncertain. They are allied, as we have seen, to isolated tribes far away, 
as the Philippine negritoes and the Andamanese, and there is a large 
number of words in their language obviously not Mon-Annam. When 
we come to the Sakai, we notice a slight shade of divergence between 
the views of the authors, for while, as it seems to us. Mr. Skeat inclines 


to the Dravido-Australian theory of Viichow, Mr. Blagden rather holds 
with the doctrine first suggested by liOgan, that the Sakai were at any 
rate in touch with the Mon-Annam peoples. Schmidt, later, has followed 
in Blagden's steps and boldly holds the theory that the Sakai are of Mon- 
Annam origin. Of the Jakuns, less is known. They are a mixed race, 
a congeries of the " tailings " of various tribes thrown into that corner 
of the Peninsula from all sides. Their language is as much Archipelago 
as Peninsular Malay. It has been thought, in order to account for 
many discrepancies, that there were two Mon-Khmer waves, the one 
preceding the other by many ages. 

The chapters dealing with their modes of living, their hunting and 
generally gaining a precarious livelihood, are full of interest and will amply 
repay the reader. One often thinks how instructive it would be if by 
some magic power one could be transported back to prehistoric times, 
and see for oneself the process by which primitive man hunted the 
mammoth and other big game. Well, here we have the operation going 
on at the present time, if Ave substitute the elephant for the more ancient 
animal. These simple people, practically naked, armed only with the 
blow-pipe and rude implements made of bamboo and hard wood, will 
with the greatest ease track down and kill not only elephants, but 
rhinoceros and tigers. The means used are astonishingly simple, but 
we shall not spoil the description by any paraphrase of our own. 

Another chapter full of interest is that which deals with the making 
of the blow-pipe, and the manufacture of the poison used. A careful 
description is given of the Ipoh tree, the famed Upas tree of Java 
(Antiaris toxicaria) ; of the Ipoh creeper, a Stryclinos, and very deadly ; 
besides the Tuba, or Denis elliptica, used to stupefy the fish. 

We have not touched upon the sections dealing with religion and 
many other points, leaving them to the reader. 

One word we must add in commendation of the illustrations. We 
have seldom seen photographs which were so good in themselves, or so 
well chosen. We reproduce a striking example here. 



Meeting of Council. 

At a Meeting of Council held on the 4th December, the undermentioned 
ladies and gentlemen were elected Members of the Society : — 

Miss J. Milne. Miss Marion C. Wilson. Mrs. J. A. Pitcairn. 

Adam J. Templeton. R. W. Waddell. Miss E. S. Forsyth, 

John Hosack. Mrs. Agnes Pattullo. WiUiam Gow. 

James Cowan. Miss Thomson. Miss Carmichael. 

Charles E. Wardlaw, C.E. Rev. J. M. Dryerre. Prof. Alexander Darroch. 

Mrs. Finlay. John J. Brown. Alexander Orr. 

William Mackay, M.A. W. S. Bertram. George Carmichael. 


James Hutcheon. James F. Gemniill. H. F. Morland Simpson, 

G. M'Kay CaiDpbell. Thomas Jack. M.A., F. S.A.Scot. 

JohnGraham,M.A.,Int.Sc. William Martin. Miss M'Nab of Black- 
John A. Todd, B.L. Frank Chalmers. ruthven. 

Miss Magdeline L. Eussell. Miss Margaret F. Simpson. Miss L. L. Ward. 

David Gloag, F.E.I.S. Thomas Chalmers Addis. The Et. Hon. the Earl of 

David Ross. James M. Burnet. Mansfield. 

Miss Margaret L. Russell. Mrs. E. K. Shepherd. W. J. S. Eastburn. 

R. M. M'Cheyne Roddick, J. Barnes Watson. Mrs. K. C. Hunter. 

M.A., F.F.A. J. Cromar Watt. William Brown,M. A., M.B. 

Francis More. John T. Frew. J. Stewart Clark. 

Chair of Geography. 

Mr. Bartholomew, as Secretary of the Committee for the Promotion 
of a Chair of Geography in the University of Edinburgh, reported that 
the Committee, in view of the immediate requirements of Geographical 
Teaching in the University, had decided to support the establishment of 
a Lectureship until such time as the Fund permitted of the endowment 
of a Chair. The Committee accordingly asked the Council to sanction 
that the interest of the present subscriptions to the Fund, amounting to 
about £2000, should be given as an annual contributiom to the Lecture- 
ship. On the motion of Mr. Blaikie, seconded by Mr. Will C. Smith, 
K.C., this was unanimously agreed to. It was also agreed that the Fund 
should be invested in the name of the Society's Trustees. 

General Meeting. 

The following alterations and additions to the Constitution and Laios of the 
Society, necessitated by the Besolutimi which was passed at the Animal General 
Meeting of the Society held on the 8th November 1906; to admit "Teacher 
Associates" to certain privileges of the Society at a reduced fee, v:ere considered 
at a General Meeting of the Society held within the United Free Assembly 
Hall, Mound, Edinburgh, on Wednesday, 12th December 1906, at 8 pjn., 
and unanimously adopted. 

Neio Law under Chapter I., and Alterations in Laws IL and VIII. 

Law II. to read : — The Society shall consist of Ordinary, Teacher 
Associate, Corresponding, and Honorary Members. 

Niv: Laiv V. — Teacher Associate Members, who must be engaged in 
the work of teaching and be approved by the Council, may be admitted 
to certain limited privileges of the Society on payment of a reduced 

Lav: VIII. to read : — Each Ordinary or Teacher Associate Member 
whose subscription is not in arrear, and each Corresponding and 
Honorary Member, shall be entitled to receive periodically a copy of the 
Society's Magazine, and of such other publications of the Society as the 
Council may determine. 

Additions to Lav: XVIII. — Every Ordinary Member has the privilege 
of introducing one visitor to each Meeting. Each Teacher Associate 
Member shall receive one ticket of admission (non-transferable) to each 


Addition to Law XXVI. — The Subscription for each Teacher Associate 
Member shall be Half-a-Guinea, payable on the 1st of November each 

Diploma of Fellowship. 

The Council conferred the Honorary Diploma of Fellowship on the 
Right Hon. Sir George D. Taubman Goldie, P.C, K.C.M.G., F.R.S., 
D.C.L., LL.D., President of the Royal Geographical Society. 

They also conferred the Ordinary Diploma of Fellowship on Henry 
Martyn Clark, M.D., Thomas Geddes, and Alexander Mackay, C.A., 
Members of the Society, who had complied with the prescribed conditions. 

Lectures in January. 

On the 10th January in Dundee, and the 11th in Aberdeen, Miss 
Marion Newbigin, D.Sc, will deliver a lecture entitled " The Swiss 
Valais : a Study in Regional Geography." 

His Serene Highness the Prince of Monaco, on the 17th January in 
Edinburgh, and the 18th January in Glasgow, will lecture to the Society 
on " Meteorological Exploration of the High Atmosphere Phenomena." 

Mr. Charles J. Wilson, F.R.S.G.S., will deliver a lecture on " Japan " 
before the Dundee and Aberdeen Centres on the 29th and 30th January. 

On the 31st January, Professor Sir W. M. Ramsay Avill address the 
Society in Edinburgh on the " Roads and Railways on the Plateau of 
Asia Minor." 



The Mungo Park Centenary. — On the afternoon of December 10, 
Sir Harry Johnston unveiled the panels which have been placed in the 
Mungo Park statue at Selkirk to celebrate the Mungo Park Centenary. 
In the evening Sir Harry Johnston delivered a lecture on Mungo Park 
and his work. 

Report of the Malta Fever Commission. — In connection with 
the paper on Malta which was published here last July, it is of interest 
to notice that, at the annual meeting of the Royal Society of London 
held on 30th November last, an announcement was made by the Council 
concerning the work of the Malta Fever Commission. It will be 
remembered that some time ago Colonel D. Bruce discovered that the 
cause of the disease was a germ, and the Commission have now 
ascertained that the main source of propagation of the fever appears 
to be the milk of infected goats. It is, of course, possible that there 
may be other contributory causes, such as mosquitoes and house flies ; 


but it is certainly a remarkable fact that since the Commission 
in Malta discovered the presence of the germ in the blood and milk 
of a large proportion of the goats in Malta, and warned the authorities 
to take the necessary precautions in the use of goats' milk, the number 
of cases of fever has rapidly diminished. In support of this statement 
it can be mentioned that, while during the months of July, August and 
September of last year, 258 men of the Navy and Army suffering from 
the fever were admitted to hospital, during the same period this year 
the number sank to twenty-six. Those best qualified to form an 
opinion believe that if the whole of the infected goats could be removed 
from the island, Mediterranean fever in Malta would be reduced to 
insignificant proportions, even if it would not entirely disappear. 


The Stein Expedition to Eastern Turkestan. — Dr. Stein, of 
whose plans we gave some account in vol. xxii., p. 379, is making good 
progress with his work. From letters published in the daily press at 
the end of November it appears that he reached Kashgar in June last, 
and was able to quit that city with his caravan at the end of that 
month. As about two months were then available before exploration in 
the desert could begin, Dr. Stein and the surveyor Rai Ram Singh 
devoted a considerable amount of time to geographical surveying. Dr. 
Stein finally arrived in Khotan early in August, and, after some further 
geographical work, began his archaeological labours there. Here some 
interesting finds were made, and the explorer then went to Keriya, 
whence the letters were written. The point of most geographical 
interest so far is that he emphasises the fact of the spread of cultivation 
in the Khotan neighbourhood. Large areas which were waste or 
covered by desert sand some years ago on his previous visit have now 
been reclaimed, and water in the Khotan oasis is abundant. The fact 
is especially interesting as it suggests the danger of overestimating the 
evidence of gradual desiccation in this region. It may be, as has been 
suggested by others, that there is an ebb and flow in the relation of 
desert and cultivated land. Dr. Stein thinks that there is evidence that 
irrigation on a large scale could be successfully carried out. 

Further letters from Keriya, under date October 10, give some 
additional details as to the extensive survey work carried out by Ram 
Singh, especially in the region between the Kara-kash and Yurang-kash 
rivers. At the time of writing Dr. Stein was about to continue his 
journey eastwards. 

The French Archaeological Expedition to Central Asia.— In 
vol. xxi. p. GGO, a brief note was given here in regard to an expedition 
to be undertaken to Central Asia under the leadership of .M. Pelliot. It 
is now reported that the mission arrived at Kashgar in Chinese 
Turkestan at the end of August last. At the date of the latest advices 
the explorers intended to proceed from Kashgar to Kucha, in the north 
of the Tarim basin, thence to the famous Lop Nor, and from there by 
way of Sa-chu into the valley of the Hoang-ho. After striking across 



the great bend of the river from Lan-chau to Siugan, they propose to 
turn north again, and make their way vld Tai-yuan and Tai-tung to 

Journey to Western Tibet.— Mr. H. Calvert, of the Indian Civil 
Service, has recently undertaken a journey in Western Tibet, and some 
particulars of this are given in The Civil and Military Gazette of Lahore, 
quoted in the Aihenmim of November 10. Mr. Calvert, who was 
entirely dependent on his Tibetan guides, took the summer route 
towards Gartok, which he reached on August 4. 

By this route Gartok is 122 miles from Shipki, and 344 from Simla. 
Mr. Calvert penetrated to Chukang on the Indus by an unknown route. 
He found the Indus here to be " a small stream easily fordable, flowing 
in a narrow steep valley barely half a mile wide." Kudok, which for 
some inscrutable reason the Tibetans have most jealously guarded — 
turning back, for instance, Captain Ravvling, on his first tour when he 
was close to it — is described as " a picturesque village on a rocky 
eminence in a wide grassy plain. The eminence is crowned by a fine 
dzone, and there are ruined battlements and bastions below. The 
village is largely in ruins, the population having decreased considerably 
of late." 

Mr, Calvert sums up the results of his journey in the following 
words: "The entire journey extended over 1080 miles, of which 620 
were in Tibet proper. The highest camp was pitched at 17,050 feet, 
and for weeks we never got below 15,000 feet. The Tibetans were 
generally friendly or indifferent, and little difficulty was experienced in 
obtaining yaks for transport. In the course of the tour every district in 
Western Tibet was visited except those in the south-east corner visited 
by Mr. Sherring last year. Several previously unknown and unmapped 
routes were followed, and though no important geographical discoveries 
were made, much useful and interesting information was obtained. The 
weather conditions were at times very trying, much rain, hail, and snow 
being encountered." 


The Results of the Foureau-Lamy Mission.— In this Magazine 
(xvii. p. 416 et seq.) some account was given of the Saharan Mission 
undertaken by M. Foureau, in company with Commandant Lamy, in 
1898-1900. The full report of this great undertaking has now appeared 
in four quarto volumes as Documents Scientifiqiies de la Mission Saharienne, 
par F. Foureau (Paris, Masson et Cie., 1903-5). The volumes constitute 
a work of the highest scientific importance, invaluable to all those 
interested in the regions traversed by the Mission. They include a 
volume of maps, and volumes devoted to astronomical and meteorological 
observations, to orography, hydrography, topography and botany, and 
to geology, ethnography, the prehistoric fauna, and the commercial 
possibilities of the region. The account already given here makes it, 
however, impossible to give space for a detailed survey of their contents. 


and we can do little more than call attention to the value of the whole, 
and to the fine illustrations which, in combination with the maps, give 
so admirable a picture of the great desert. A few words must, however, 
be devoted to the chapter on Conclusions Economiques with which the last 
volume closes. In effect M. Foureau states that while the experiences 
of the Mission have dispelled some old fears as to the impossibility of 
crossing the desert, they but confirm the old accounts of the poverty of 
the region. It may be that beneath its surface great mineral wealth lies 
hidden, and M. Foureau is of opinion that careful and detailed investiga- 
tion should be devoted to this point, but from the surface, throughout 
by far the greater part of the area, little is to be hoped. By a rational 
organisation and administration of the country the number of inhabitants 
can be increased, as also the productivity of certain small tracts, but 
beyond this the chief hope lies in the possible mineral wealth. As 
regards the French Sudan, a wise administration is required with the 
avoidance of the use of Senegalese troops, for these, though excellent 
fighters, are very undesirable as regular police. Security should be 
assured and cultivation encouraged by every means in the power of 
the Government, while money and cloth should be made the sole legal 
media of exchange. In the Shari and Congo region the desiderata are 
an improved jiostal and telegraphic service, a complete utilisation of the 
existing means of water-transport, and the complete abolition of human 
porterage with the introduction of other methods of transport where 
possible. Here also cloth and money should be the only media of 
exchange. M. Foureau concludes by bluntly demanding the removal 
of all missionaries, of whatever church, it being his opinion that they 
stir up an amount of strife which more than counterbalances any good 
they may do. 

New Turco-Egyptian Frontier. — We publish here a map to 
show the course of this boundary as determined by the recent agreement. 
The task of the Commissioners who represented the Egyptian Govern- 
ment necessitated an amount of exploration which has produced results 
of considerable geographical importance. 

For the first 20 miles the new frontier follows the line of the water- 
shed between the Wadi el Araba on the east, and the feeders of the 
Wadi el Arish on the west. It then crosses an open plateau, drained — 
if that expression may be used of a sterile upland where a few heavy 
showers in winter and two or three poor wells alone supply water — by 
the Wadi el Jerafa, which runs into the northern portion of the Wadi el 
Araba, which again slopes towards the Dead Sea, and the Wadi el 
Qureiya, which runs into the Wadi el Arish. From this point the 
frontier follows the watershed between the Wadi el Arish and the wadis 
of the wilderness of Judtea to Birin, beyond which point the dividing 
line between the feeders of the former and those of the latter lies in 
Turkish territory. From the El Auja district to Rafah the country 
slopes towards the Mediterranean, and the " hard desert " of the Sinai 
and Arabia Petraja gradually gives way to sandy dunes and steppe till 
the wells of Rafah are reached. 



While the southern half of the frontier line from Aqaba to Mayein 
traverses an arid and difficult mountainous region, inhabited only by a 
few Beduin, and very poorly supplied with water, the districts on each 
side of the line from Mayein to Rafah, especially in the neighbourhood 
of Ain Kadeis, are described as comparatively well watered and even 
capable of some agricultural development. Barley is grown as a rain 
crop by the Beduin of the ^Yadi el Jaifi and El Kosseima districts ; and 
the springs of Ain Kadeis, Ain el Gedairat, and, above all, of Ain el 
Kosseima, supply their flocks with abundance of water throughout the 

New Turco-Egyptian Frontier. 1906 

year. El Auja lies on the Turkish side of the fi'ontier, and is also well 
supplied with water. In fact, it would be no exaggeration to say that 
between Ain Kadeis on the Egyptian and El Auja on the Turkish side 
of the boundary — a distance of at most 25 miles — there is a water supply 
which, by the construction of a few extemporised cisterns, could be 
made to suffice for 7000 men, and might be considerably increased by 
the sinking of new wells. 

While the territory between Wadi el Jaifi and the JJediterranean is 
never likely to hold a large settled population, there is no doubt that 
the construction of dams across some of the wadis which carry a con- 
siderable amount of storm water to the Wadi el Arish durine: the winter 


would enable the Beduin to cultivate barley, tobacco, and vegetables to 
a much greater extent than is actually the case. 


The San Francisco Earthquake and the Bogoslof Islands. — 

Papers on the San Francisco earthquake catastrophe accumulate rapidly, 
in marked contrast to the Valparaiso tremor, information in regard 
to which is slow in coming to hand. In the Popular Scientific Monthly 
for October, Professor David Starr Jordan gives an interesting account 
of the actual rift, the article being copiously illustrated by photographs, 
some of them very striking. Professor Jordan also points out that in 
the spring of 1906 a fresh island arose in the St. John Bogoslof group 
in the Behring Sea. The two previous islands arose during earthquake 
disturbances, and Professor Jordan suggests that the birth of the new 
island is connected with the great earthquake. In a further paper in 
the Popular Science Montlilij for December, an illustrated account is given 
of these curious islands, and of the origin of each. 

The Geography of Alaska. — We have received from the United 
States Geological Survey an elaborate and beautifully illustrated mono- 
graph on the Geography and Geology of Alaska, which forms Professional 
Paperl^o. 45. The work is professedly a compilation, intended to make 
the large amount of material which has been accumulated of late years 
accessible to a wider public, but as the author, Mr. Alfred Brooks, has 
himself spent seven consecutive years of field work in the province, he 
speaks with a first-hand knowledge of the problems involved. Mr. Brooks 
states that his prime purpose has been to disseminate more accurate 
notions in regard to the geography and geology of the region, and to 
serve in some measure to dispel the popular fallacies in regard to it, and 
we fancy that many will find from a perusal of the book that their 
previous knowledge of the region was largely fallacious. At the base 
of much popular error, of course, lies the fact that Alaska on an ordinary 
map of North America is much distorted, so that its true size and 
position are difficult to realise. A striking little sketch map in the 
volume shows the province superimposed upon an ordinary map of the 
States, and makes it clear that the easternmost and Avesternmost points 
are separated by a distance equal to that between the Pacific and Atlantic 
coasts of the States in the latitude of Los Angelos, while the distance 
between the northernmost and southernmost points is nearly equal to that 
between the Mexican and Canadian boundaries of the States. With 
such an extension it is not surprising that there should be great variation 
in climate, a variation much greater than popular belief allows for. 
Some of the figures and tables in the section on climate are indeed very 
striking, especially those relating to rainfall. South-eastern Alaska has 
a temperate, equable, and remarkably humid climate. Sitka, approxi- 
mately in the latitude of Aberdeen, has a rainfall of 88 inches per 
annum, and in the south-eastern region generally the mean annual fall 
varies from 80 to 1 ."^O inche.=. Two years' records at Fort Tongass, at 


the entrance of Dixon Inlet, give indeed an average fall of 133 inches, 
with a mean annual temperature of 48°. Throughout the district we 
liave cool summers and comparatively Avarm winters, but during the 
winter months, which have three-fourths of the precipitation, there is 
almost incessant rain. On an average there are only about one hundred 
clear days in the year, and these largely in the spring. In marked con- 
trast Avith this region is the Alaskan interior, where the climate is 
continental in character, semi-arid, with an average rainfall of only 11 
inches at Eagle, and with great extremes of heat and cold. Space does 
not permit of a fuller consideration of this or the other interesting topics 
discussed in the monograph, but those interested in a remarkable region 
may be confidently referred to Mr. Brooks's work. The section on 
climate, from which the above observations are quoted, is written by 
Mr. Cleveland Abbe. • 

Commercial Geography. 

The World's Production of Rubber. — According to a Eeport 
presented by M. Ch. Dutfart to the recent Colonial Congress at 
Marseilles, the actual production of rubber at the present moment 
amounts to about 56,000 tons, of which 36,800 tons come from America, 
about 17,500 tons from Africa, and 1700 tons from Asia and Oceania. 
The French Colonies produce 6600 tons and stand second in the list of 
productive countries, the amount surpassing that produced by the British 
territories. The French territories in AVest Africa constitute the first 
source of supply, and after them come in order the French Congo, 
Indo-China, and New Caledonia. At one time the French colonial 
production went chiefly to England, and in part to Germany, but more 
and more it is coming direct to France. In 1896 the importation from 
the Colonies into France was only 317 tons, while in 1904 it was 2378 
tons. In 1896, again, the French colonies sent 1258 tons direct to 
England, and in 1904, 2165 tons, the increase in the latter case being 
proportionately much less than in the former. 

The Industrial Situation in the Southern United States. — We 
have more than once alluded here to the economic changes which are goinw 
on in the Southern States of North America as a result of the altered 
conditions brought about by the war. A very interesting summing up 
of the present situation from the standpoint of economic geography is 
given in an article by Professor Surface in the BuUet'm of the Geographical 
Society of Philadelphia (July 1906). The author begins by pointing out 
that the population in the Southern States in 1900 was twenty-four and 
a half millions, of which nearly one-third were of negro descent and 
about 2 per cent, foreign. As compared with the census of the previous 
decade, the tendency for the population to accumulate in towns is marked 
as is to be expected from the rapid industrial development which is 
taking place, and there is also a large migration to the less densely 
populated regions in the west and north-west. Of the total population 
1 8 per cent, are engaged in agriculture, which is still the most important 


occupation. Cotton is the only important export crop, and of an esti- 
mated 50,000,000 acres capable of bearing this crop in the cotton belt, 
only about half is actually in bearing, and this in spite of the heavy 
demand for the product. Even for the present acreage, however, the 
labour supply is inadequate, and as yet the negro is the only labourer 
who shows aptitude for the climatic conditions which exist. On the 
other hand, the development of the towns and the increased demand 
for domestic servants is more and more attracting the negro away from 
the cotton belt, and the demand for white labourers in the towns is also 
great. The diminution of labourers is having the interesting effect of 
causint^ the large plantations to be more and more divided up into small 
farms, which can be worked by the owners for the most part. There 
is no doubt also that the abundant supply of slave labour in former 
days has had its usual effect in checking the development of the cotton 
industry, for an efficient cotton-picking machine would do much to solve 
the labour problem, as would also a corn harvester adapted to the 
special conditions ki the uplands. 

As regards manufactures, we have already emphasised here the rapid 
(^rowth of cotton manufacture in the south, but the labour problem is 
here almost as intense as in the fields. Hitherto, as in the earlier 
development of the cotton industry in England, the demand has been 
largely met by child labour, but the community are coming to a percep- 
tion of the economic waste involved. Professor Surface says relatively 
little of this question, but another journal (The Annals of the American 
Academy of Political and Social Science, March 1906) gives a terrible picture 
of the conditions now existing. In the South children form 25 per 
cent, of the wage-earners, and while many States have no regulations on 
the subject whatever, Alabama and Arkansas, which are among those 
which have such laws, place ten years as the limit of age, the statements 
made as to age by parents or guardians being taken without inquiry. 
The origin of child labour is found in the immigration into the 
towns of whole families, all of whose members, women and children 
alike, had been accustomed to working in the fields. The whole family 
similarly went to the factory, with the result that the wages of the 
whole drop to the level of those earned elsewhere by the adult males. 
There is even reason to believe that children are imported from the Old 
World and exploited by persons who are regarded as their legal guardians. 
The child-labour question occurs not only in connection with cotton 
manufacture, but also in the tobacco industry, where in North Carolina 
children form 23 per cent, of the workers, and in mining, where in many 
States the legal limit for boys is only twelve, a limit to which there is 
reason to believe very little attention is paid. The student of sociology 
will be interested to perceive how all the vicious conditions which accom- 
panied child labour in Great Britain are here being repeated, including 
child marriage, with all its evils. 

As the figures given above indicate, foreign labour as yet is not well 
represented, and hitherto the foreign labourers have not been found very 
satisfactory, apparently in part because of the method of recruiting 
employed. There is locally some demand for the importation of Chinese, 


Japanese, and Korean labourers for the plantations, on account of their 
supposed cheapness. Professor Surface expresses the opinion that it is 
the negro who holds the key to the industrial situation, at least as 
regards agriculture, and that the aim of the employers should be to 
endeavour to attract him back to the soil, as he is apparently unsuited 
for the conditions of town life, and rapidly degenerates there. 


In Sir George Goldie's address to the Society, which we publish this 
month, reference is made to the fact that after July next Geography is 
to cease to be a subject in Diplomatic and Foreign Office entrance ex- 
aminations. It is of interest to note that the night after this address 
was delivered in Edinburgh a question was asked in Parliament on the 
subject, and the Secretary of State (Sir Edward Grey) replied that 
"although a knowledge of geography is no doubt useful, it is a subject 
with which men of general education are generally acquainted, and 
which is easily acquired after entry into the service." Sir George G oldie 
has written to the Times calling attention to the statements contained in 
his address, and expressing regret that he finds himself unable to agree 
with the official position. Most persons will probably agree that the 
official optimism is hardly justified by experience, so far as the first part 
of Sir Edward's statement goes, and will be inclined to suf pose that 
although doubtless the subject is sometimes acquired after entrance into 
the service, yet the knowledge is then often acquired at a cost to the 
country somewhat out of jjroportion to its worth. 

Following upon Sir George Goldie's letter some other correspondence 
has appeared in the Times. From a letter of Major- General Russell we 
quote the following instructive paragraph : — 

A former Governor of Mauritius lias told me that when he applied for the 
services of a medical officer for the Seychelles Islands, where an epidemic had 
broken out, he was informed by the Colonial Office that his own medical officer 
could visit these islands once a week, and hence the extia cost of an additional 
doctor would be avoided. He replied that the suggestion was excellent, but there 
were difficulties in carrying it out, as the Seychelles Islands were over 900 miles 
distant from Mauritius. After this, can it be asserted that well-educated men in 
this country are usually versed in modern geography ? 

Mr. H. T. Mackinder also writes discussing the bearings of the 
proposed changes. No apology is necessary for quoting from his letter 
the following concise account of the present position of affairs : — 

I hope that Sir Edward Grey will forgive me when I say that his description 
of geography is twenty years out of date. Twenty years ago there were a few voices 
already disturbing the wilderness, but for the most part geography was confined 
to primary education and to the lower secondary education of girls. Persons of 
superior education were wont as a rule to take pride in their geographical ignor- 
ance. At that time the attitude of the Civil Service Ccmmissicneis was fully 
VOL. xxin. D 


justified. But I submit that the steps recently taken by nearly all the Univer- 
sities betoken a change with which even the Commissioners must reckon, what- 
ever the temporary success of the recent strategical move. These steps, it seems 
to me, constitute a general admission of the inaccuracy of the two assumptions 
made in Sir Edward's reply in Parliament. 

Mr. Mackinder then goes on to detail the position now taken up by- 
most of the Universities of Britain in regard to the subject. 

As, however, there can be little doubt that the official attitude still 
represents to a considerable extent that of the ordinary " educated " 
person even, it is to be feared, in Scotland, it is perhaps worth while to 
call attention to the number and variety of the geographical courses 
available to the student in the German universities. These courses for 
the present session are detailed in the German geographical journals, and 
we quote from Petermann's Mitteilungen some facts about the courses in 
geography and the allied subjects open to the student in the University 
of Berlin. We notice first that in this University eir/Ideen professors and 
sixteen Privat-docents are to lecture on geography and the related subjects 
during the present session. Students may attend courses on mathe- 
matical geography, or take practical classes, elementary and advanced, 
including general geography, cartography and oceanography, lectures on 
spherical astronomy, and a number of courses or lectures on the taking 
of astronomical observations, whether for nautical or geographical 
purposes. They may study anthropology and ethnology, following up 
the general courses with detailed studies of the folk-lore of special 
primitive nations, or, on the other hand, correlating their studies with 
the study of the history of the great civilised nations, ancient or modern. 
They may study general meteorology and climatology with the prospect 
of being able to follow these up along special lines. If their interests 
lead them in the direction of plant-geography, they may study generally 
the distribution of vegetation over the globe, or the plants of special 
areas, regarded from their economic aspects. Courses on statistics and 
geology are also open to them. Again, there are a vast number of lectures- 
or courses on the geography of special regions, often studied in relation 
to the history and development of the region, and so on — we might 
continue the list considerably further. "While of course no one would 
suggest that the equipment of a Civil Service candidate should include a 
knowledge of all these varied topics, the length of the list must surely 
suggest that modern geography is a big subject, and is not ail comprised 
in one of the ordinary school text-books, nor yet is it a subject which 
can be utterly neglected when the school days are over. If Germany 
finds it worth while to have in her universities lectures on her colonies, 
on their natural products, on their development and resources, and so 
forth, it would almost seem as if similar courses might be useful in this 
country. The list just given at least affords some support to Sir George 
Goldie's view that in the battle of life the nations who take geography 
seriously are better armed than those who regard it as child's-play, 
unworthy of the attention of grown men. There is another moral, 
which it is perhaps unnecessary to emphasise here, that Edinburgh might 


profitably draw from the list of professors and lecturers in the 
Berlin University. 

An article by Professor Heilprin, in the Bulletin of the American 
Geographkal Society (Sept. 1906), on the "Impressions of a Naturalist in 
British Guiana," gives an interesting account of the vast primaeval 
forest which stretches from the Amazon to the Orinoco, and may be 
recommended to the notice of teachers whose classes are studying this 
part of South America. The contrast between the tropical forest and 
the familiar woodlands of the temperate zones is well brought out, though 
it is interesting to note that Professor Heilprin contests Mr. Wallace's 
familiar statements in regard to the uniform green of the tropical forest. 
On the water-front, at least, he thinks the display of bloom is not less 
than in the temperate forest, which is, after all, not a region of brilliant 
colour like the open fields and waste lands. The paper also contains an 
interesting account of the animal life of the South American forest, and 
is full of vivid touches of observation. 

The tradition that the Grand Caiion of the Colorado should always 
be chosen as a typical example of the erosive power of water is so strong 
that no excuse is necessary for calling the attention of teachers to an 
article on the Caiion in the Popular Science Monthly for November last. 
The article is based on the new survey of the region, and supplies some 
figures and illustrations which will be found useful in supplementing and 
correcting the ordinary text-book accounts. Interesting is the stress 
laid upon the burden of quartz sand carried by the river as the main 
erosive agent, while a clear account is given of the different types of rock 
forming the caiion w^alls. 



Cambridge : A Concise Guide to the Town and University. By John Willis 
Clark, M.A., Hon. Litt.D. Third Edition. Cambridge : Macmillan and 
Bowes, 1906. Price Is. net. 
The visitor to Cambridge could wish for nothing better than Dr. Clark's com- 
plete and yet compact little guide. The colleges are described by one who knowa 
them well, and the descriptions are enhanced by numerous illustiations and 


Ostasienfahrt. Von Dr. Franz Doflein. Leipzig : B. G. Teubner, 1906. 
Pp. 511. Price 13 marks. 

The Assistant-Keeper of the Royal Bavarian Zoological Museum here gives us 
his experiences and observations in China, Japan, and Ceylon in 1904. His ship, 
the Prinz Heinrich, was overhauled by a Russian man-of-war in the Red Sea, and 
was injured on a coral reef in the Indian Ocean. He describes with the amplitude 
and accuracy of an erudite and scientific man the leading features of the countries 
through which he travelled, and furnishes beautiful illustrations of the scenery 
and population, and carefully executed representations of the more novel zoological 


forms which he observed. In the course of his scientific investigations in Ceylon 
he says he came to a district where there was only one white man, "an irrigation 
engineer, Mr. Ferguson, of Scottish extraction, who, like so many colonial English- 
men, united a deep interest in natural science to very great knowledge." The 
author devotes a chapter to " the Yellow Peril," and points out that while most 
merchants have formed a bad opinion of the Japanese as the result of their inter- 
course with Japanese merchants and sailors, a man of science who comes in con- 
tact only with the best classes of the population will form a very favourable opinion 
of them. He proceeds to examine the Japanese people from a scientific point of view. 
They regard the family of the nation as supreme, while the individual is only a pass- 
ing form, thus resembling the animal creation, where individual life is sacrificed 
in order to maintain the species. Socialistic ideas would find in Japan a fruitful 
soil, for we see everywhere there traces of communistic or socialistic institutions. 
The pride, ambition, and enthusiasm of the people place immense power in the 
hands of an intelligent government. Above all, the Spartan upbringing of the 
Japanese converts them into a dangerous foe for any European nation. Now, how- 
ever, Japan is entering on a great crisis. Her social life has not been much altered 
by her new conditions. Although adopting modern manners, a Japanese man still 
leads the old life in the midst of his family. But changes in character may occur as 
the result of the modern education. Already, the author remarked a recrud- 
escence of the less admirable qualities of the people. Their behaviour when peace 
with Eussia was declared showed how dangerous for the state they might beconie 
now that they are no longer trammelled by ancient customs. The old foundations 
of their education — Religion, Ancestor-worship, and Respect for parents — begin 
to disappear. Europe substitutes nothing, for the Japanese regard her Christianity 
with scepticism and dislike. Looking to the inflammable character of the Japanese 
and to the freedom from ancient ideas of the masses in crowded towns, it is pro- 
bable that demagogues will influence them ; and if Western culture leads to the 
rule of Individualism in Japan, then the chief source of the strength and might of 
the nation will be destroyed. 

Dr. Doflein continues: "In all probability Japan w411 be a much more 
powerful political factor than she is at present, but her development is 
much more diflicult to estimate than that of any other nation, partly owing to 
the character of the Japanese, partly owing to the destruction of their ancient 
customs." With regard to their commercial competition with Europeans, the 
author U of opinion that the awakening of the East Avill do good to German 
commerce, but that in China British merchants will sufl'er far more than German 
from Japanese rivals. He exclaims energetically : " I see no ' yellow peril ' in 
Japan. On the contrary, I hope and believe that we shall derive endless blessing 
from that country. Japan presses with all her might towards the first rank of 
rival Powers, and wishes to stand side by side with Britain, the United States, 
and Germany. As a new factor, she will give them a fresh impetus. We shall 
have a hard battle, but it will do us good. Our bureaucracy and littlenesses in life 
aad trade will disappear before the giant task we shall encounter by the awakening 
of non-European nations." 


The Making of Modern Egypt. By Sir Auckland Colvin, K.C.S.T., K.C.M.G., 
CLE. London : Seeley and Co., 1906. Price 18s. nd. 

During the Ivst ten or twenty years we have had many books and reports 
devling, directly or indirectly, with the making of modern Egypt. It is a tale 


that bear3 repetition ; for it would be difficult, if not impossible, to select a period 
of twenty-two years in the hist)ry of the colonies or dependencies of England or 
of any other country which would more suc.essfally illustrate the saying that 
truth is stranger than fiction, or would compare in national, general, and romantic 
interest with the twenty-two years between 1882 and 1904, i.e. the period assigned 
to " the making of Modern Egypt " by the writer of the book. In perusiug any 
book on this subject comparisons with the brilliant works and reports of Lord 
Oromer, Milner, D.iwkins, Scott, and others are inevitable, but we may say at 
once that the author of this work has nothing to fear from a comparison with the 
works of his predecessors. Sir Auckland Colvin has special qualifications for the 
task he undertook. He is an Indian Civil Servant, who has risen through all the 
grades of that distinguished service to being Lieutenant-Governor of the North- 
western Provinces ani Oudh, and for some years he was British Comptroller- 
General of Egypt and Financial Adviser to the Khedive. He has thus brought 
to the preparation of this work a special intimate expei'ience and a statesmanlike 
breadth of view, the advantiges of which become more and more obvious as the 
work proceeds. The story is the record of the triumph of Lord Cromer, of whom 
Sir Auckland is an acknowledged admirer. " The central figure," he writes, 
*'has been the British Minister and Agent. Cabinets in London, in Paris, and in 
Cairo have come and gone ; diplomatists have fretted their hour on the stage, and 
have faded into obscurity. Able and devoted subordinates have in turn assisted 
the British Agent ; and, their term accomplished, have passed on to other labours. 
Lord Cromer alone has remained throughout ; in him, during more than twenty 
years, the life of Egypt has centred, and from him all energy has radiated. The 
making of modern Egypt is the work of Lord Cromer." 

Undoubtedly the figure of Lord Cromer stands out high above those who may 
claim to have had a share in the making of modern Egypt, but lie has been the 
first to acknowledge that he has had mxny able and strenuous subordinates, with- 
out whose help his task would have been impossible. Sir Auckland Colvin does 
ample justice to them also, and it is pleasant to find him writing in most cordial 
terms of his French colleagues, of whom many a hard thing was said not so long 
ago. In his estimate of them Sir Auckland's exceptionally wide experience of 
men and manners has stood him in good stead, and an extract of his appreciation 
of their character and services is worth quoting, especially as it furnishes a good 
example of the brilliant style in which this book is written. The French officials 
in Egypt, he says, " were for the most part men of marked ability and untiring 
industry. . . . Keen of wit, incisive of tongue, choleric of disposition, sensitive as 
children, kindly as women, the Frenchman was the very opposite of the phleg- 
matic, imperturbable Briton whom he lugged along with him in his heated course. 
Which of the pair did the most useful work it was not always easy to say, but the 
paces and showy movement of the Frenchmen were effective. They were never 
seen in the tennis-court, nor in the saddle ; nor did field sports attract them. 
Constant and often heated discussion with one another was their relaxation ; the 
black official portfolio their symbol ; the frock-coat their habitual garb. There 
must have been something abhorrent to their passion for correctness in the negli- 
gent costume, the slack disregird of formality, the indifference to the outward 
and visible signs of office, which in Egypt, as elsewhere, distinguish Englishmen. 
But difference of temperament ani of training seemed to draw together, rather 
than to repel. To their honour be it said, the French sought to do their duty 
as conscientiously by the country which employed them, and by the colleagues 
who worked with them, as though their portion had been in France, and tlieir 
colleagues of their own nation. . . , Whatever the verdict of their countrymen 


may have been, British colleagues recognised that their French associates were 
good men and true ; worthy representatives of the great country from which they 
came ; pleasant in their private lives, as in public life they were above reproach. 
De Blignieres, Bellaique de Bughas, Bouterou, are gone to the silent land (if any 
land, indeed, be silent where the spirits of the French dead do congregate) ; Liron 
d'Airolles, Gay Lussac, Barois, and others, happily remain with us." 

The history of these twenty-two years during which modern Egypt was being 
made is a tangled skein, of which it is impossible in the space at our disposal to 
give even a sketch. But we refer our readers to Sir Auckland Colvin's interesting, 
impartial, and graphic history, assured that the perusal of it will satisfy all that 
the work accomplished in Egypt is one of which the English, and, we must add, 
the French nation, may well be proud. And yet an experienced administrator 
and competent judge, viz. Sir Auckland himself, likens it to the barrage, which 
may be described as the life-blood of Egypt. "The barrage,'" he says, "is a 
replica of the British position in Egypt. It initiated in French action. It is 
built upon unstable foundations ; yet, with constant caution, they can be regarded 
as secure. It is essential, in the interests of the population, that the barrage 
should be placed under the care of Europeans. It is patchwork, but brilliant 
patchwork. It holds up the vitalising forces of the country, and distributes them 
to the best advantage." Mutatis mutandis ; the same may be said of the British 
position in Egypt to-day. 

The last chapters of the work are devoted to a description of the present con- 
dition and prospects of the Soudan, now an integral part of Egypt, with an area 
of over a million square miles, and a population of under two millions of souls, 
and presenting difficulties and problems which demand the most consummate 
statesmanship and patience. The contrast between Egypt and the Soudan is 
remarkable. " The Egyptian is laborious ; the Soudani, if he is an Arab, scorns 
labour ; if he is a black man, he cannot be induced, except by hunger or scourge, 
to undergo any but the lightest toil. The fertility of the soil of Egypt has passed 
into a proverb ; in the Soudan irrigation is in its infancy, and the greater part of 
the country has never recei\ ed a drop of water from any of the great rivers whic 1 
traverse it. In Egypt distances are inconsiderable, and means of transit abound ; 
the distances in the Soudan are immense, and transit is still mainly confined to 
that most ancient friend of man, the camel. The seaboard is easily accessible to 
all Egypt ; to the greater part of the Soudan it is most difficult of access, and to 
many provinces it is wholly unknown. The climate of Egypt is far from un- 
healthy to the white man ; the Soudan in part spells death to him,, and almost 
everywhere, for many months in the year, is oppressive and enervating. Finally, 
the Egyptian is a quiet subject, and averse from arms ; the Soudan is full of fierce 
fighting men, of fearless Arab descent, and of excitable and savage black races, 
both Muhammedan and heathen, but alike ignorant and impulsive, whose 
fanaticism may be fanned into flame at any moment, and whose loyalty depends 
rather on personal regard for individual rulers than on acquiescence in foreign 
rule, or on acceptance of European guidance. . . . Imagination fails to picture 
those illimitable regions, the endless swamps, the weary waterless distances, the 
mighty rivers, the interminable deserts, the great silence, the scattered, sparse, 
and diverse people, the little band of British officers working out their lives in 
solitude, discomfort, and ill-health, while watching over the painful labours which 
precede the coming of a new life." 

The genius of the British race for colonisation and for government has been 
tested and proved in many ways, on many a shore and in many a climate, and we 
know that often the task of colonisation or government has come on us as an un- 


expected, and often an unwelcome, task or duty. But this cannot be said of the 
regeneration and civilisation of the Soudan, a Herculean task, but one deliberately 
undertaken, the dangers and difficulties of which are only now being appreciated ; 
and it will tax the genius and statesmanship of England to an extent which, 
perhaps fortunately, we are slow to realise. Sir Auckland says, " There has never, 
probably, in the history of the world been such a deliberate experiment in the 
reclamation of mankind over so large an area ; nor perhaps such an incongruous 
couple engaged in it as the blunt Briton from the Thames and his slim coadjutor 
from the Nile. Which will prove to have been the better forecast, the pessimism 
of General Gordon, or the optimism of Lord Cromer, it is not for the present 
generation to divine. Will Great Britain echo the boast of another imperial race, 
and be rcAvarded hereafter by the love of those quos domuit, nexaq^ie piu Jonginqiie 
revinxii ? Or will she share the destiny of the mythical benefactors of whom the 
Latin poet sang 1 of the disillusioned demi-gods, whose labours, identical in 
character with her own, brought them no adequate meed of acknowledgment ? " 
In times like those of to-day, when the political arena rings with the scarcely 
intelligible battle-cries of mere sects and parties, we can remember with relief and 
pleasure that elsewhere in the world, and certainly in Egypt and the Soudan, the 
political constructive genius, which made England what it is, is still at work on a 
task worthy of its great traditions, and has enough material on which to exercise 
its highest powers for many years to come. It will be a happy day for the Soudan 
if, some twenty or twenty-five years hence, a Sir Auckland Colvin of these days is 
able to record for the Soudan as brilliant a success in constructive statesmanship 
as this thoughtful and instructive work now records for the land of the 


Kinglalce's Eothcn. With an Introduction and Notes, by D. S. Hogarth. 
London : Henry Frowde, 1906. Price 2s. 6d. 

This dainty little reprint has not much direct geographical interest, either as 
regards text or notes, but is of interest in throwing light upon the conditions of 
life in the East at the date when the book was written. 

Brown's Comjyrehensive Nautical Almanack for 1907. Glasgow : 
Brown and Son, 1906. Price Is. 

We have received the new issue of this invaluable publication, revised and 
corrected to date. According to a notice sent with the volume, the 1907 edition 
is published in two forms, the ordinary and an edition on thicker and better 
paper containing some additional information. To the scientific geographer, no 
less than the navigator, the information contained in the Almanack is indispens- 
able, and we extend to it our annual welcome. 


The Passing of Korea. By Homer B. Hulbert, A.M., F.E.G.S. Illustrated 
from Photographs. Royal 8vo. Pp. xii + 473. Price 16s. net. London : William 
Heineuiann, 1906. 

Un Crepuscule d'Islam. Maroc. Par Andre Chevrillok, Crown 8vo. 
Pp. 315. 3/r. 5. Paris : Librairie Hachette et Cie. 


The World of To-Day . Volume vi. A Survey of the Lands and Peoples of 
the Globe as seen in Travel and Commerce. By A. E. Hope Moxckieff. 
Pp. vi + 380. Price 8s. net. London : The Gresham Publishing Co., 1906. 

Sketches from Normandy. By Louis Becke. Crown 8vo. Pp. 250. Price 
6s. net. London : T. Werner Laurie, 1906. 

Edinburgh under Sir Walter Scott. By "VV. T. Fyfe. With an Introduction 
by R. S. Rait. Demy 8vo. Pp. xxi + 314. London : Archi- 
bald Constable and Co., 1906. 

My Pilgrimage to the Wise Men of the East. By Moncure Daniel Co.nway- 
Royal 8 vo. Pp. viii + 416. Price 12s. 6d. London: Archibald Constable and 

Co., 1906. 

Modern Sjxiin, 1815-1898. By H. Butler Clarke, M.A. With a Memoir 
by the Rev. W. H. Huttox, B.D. Crown 8vo, Pp. xxvi + 510. Price 7s. 6d, 
Cambridge : LTniversity Press, 1906. 

La Chine novatrice et guerriere. Par le Capitaine D'Ollone. Un volume in 
18. Pp. viii + 319. Price 3 fr. 50. Paris : Armand Colin et Cie., 1906. 

The Daicn of Modern Geography. Vol. iii. A History of Exploration and 
Geographical Science from the Middle of the Thirteenth to the Early Years of the 
Fifteenth Century. By C. Ratmoxd Beazlet, M.A., F.R.G.S. {c. a.d. 1260- 
1420.) 8vo. Pp. xvi + 638. Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1906. 

Natives of Australia. By N. W. Thomas, M.A. (Native Races of the 
British Empire.) Demy 8vo. Pp. xii + 256. London : Archibald 
Constable and Co., 1906. 

The Romance of an Eastern Capitcd. By F. B. Bradley-Birt, B.A., 
F.R.G.S., LC.S. Demy 8vo. Pp. x + 349. London: Smith, 
Elder and Co., 1906. 

The Loiver Niger and its Tribes. By Mnjor Arthur Glyx Leonard. 
Demy 8vo. Pp. xxii + 559. Price 12s. 6d. net. London : Macmillan and Co., 

Also the following Reports, etc. : — 

Centred Provinces District Gaxetteer. 17 Parts. Edited by E. V. Russell, 
LC.S. Allahabad, 1904-1905. 

Punjab District Gazetteer. Vol. xiii-a. With Maps, 1904. Lahore, 1906. 

A Report on the Work of the Survey Department in 1905. By Captain H. G. 
Lyons, D.Sc, F.R.S., Director-General. Pp. 76. Cairo, 1906. 

Twenty-fourth Annual Report of the Fishery Board for Scotland for the Year 
1905. Part iii. Scientific Investigations. Glasgow, 1906. 

British Guiana Blue Bool; 1905-1906. Georgetown, Demerara, 1906. 

Punjab District Gazetteers. Delhi District. Lahore, 1904. 

Madras District Gazetteers. Vol. ii. 3 Parts. Madias, 1906. 

Bengal District Gazetteers. By L. S. S. O'Malley. Vol. i. Calcutta, 1906. 

District Gazetteers. Statistics, 1901-1902. 38 Parts. Calcutta, 1806. 

Western A^istralian Year-BooJc, 1902-4 (Thirteenth Edition). By Malcolm 
A. C. Fraser, F.R.G.S., F.S.S., F.R.C.Inst. Pp. x + 1283. Perth, 1906. 

Military Report on Egypt, 1906. Prepared for the General StaflF, War Office. 
Maps. London, 1906. 

The Science Year - Book : Diary, Directory, and Scientific Summary, 1907. 
Edited by Major B. F. S. Badex-Powell. Pp. 362. Price 5s. Londcn : King, 
Sell and Olding, 1907. 

Piiblishers forwarding books for review tvill greatly oblige by marking the price in 
clear figures, especially in the case of foreign books. 






(inth Portrait) 

H.S.H. Albert 1st, Prince of Monaco, to whom the Society's Gold 
Medal for 1906 was presented in Edinburgh on January 17th last, is 
distinguished for the important services which he has rendered to 
oceanography. On a previous visit to Edinburgh on July 15, 1891, the 
Prince read a paper before the Royal Society on "A New Ship for 
Oceanographic Work." Before that time he had been devoting his 
attention to oceanographical research in a small vessel, the HirowleJle. 
In this ship, in the years from 1885 to 1891, he made many studies in 
oceanographical science, especially on the marine fauna of great depths, 
and this has been also his object in subsequent voyages for a period 
of twenty-one years. The Hirondelle being found to be too small for 
the requirements of the work, a three-masted schooner, with auxiliary 
engines, was built in 1891. This schooner, named the Princesse Alice, 
was used until 1898. She, in turn, proved to be too small, and was 
replaced by a full-powered steamship of more than 1400 tons. In 1892 
the Prince of Monaco again visited Scotland, and contributed a paper 
to the Edinburgh meeting of the British Association. Subsequently, 
besides carrying on deep-sea work, he undertook a new investigation. 
He had for many years taken much interest in meteorology, especially 
as connected with the ocean, and had developed the study of this 
science on Atlantic islands. He now undertook investigations, by means 
of kites and balloons, in the higher atmosphere. Not content with his 
investigations in the regions of the trade winds, he turned his attention 
to the Polar regions, and last year he made, as already noted here, his 
third cruise to Spitsbergen and the neighbouring seas. There he carried 
out a series of successful and interesting experiments with meteorological 
kites and balloons, and also, with the assistance of French, Norwegian, 
and Scottish parties, undertook a detailed survey of a large part of the 



north-west of Spitsbergen and Prince Charles Foreland. In 1899 the 
foundation stone of the great Cceanographical Museum of Monaco was 
laid, under the patronage of the German Emperor; and last year, as we 
have also recorded, the Prince of Monaco founded an institute in 
Paris, with an international committee, associated with his collections 
in Monaco. This institute he endowed to the extent of £1 GO, 000. 
Almost every European country has some prominent scientists Avho have 
been definitely associated with the oceanographical and meteorological 
work of the Prince of Monaco. In this country there are associate-! 
with him the names of Mr. J. Y. Buchanan, whose scientific researches 
on board the Princesse Alice and at the Monaco Museum have been of 
much importance ; Mr. W. S. Bruce, of the Scotia, who accompanied him 
on all his Arctic voyages; and Mr. W. Smith, junr., Aberdeen, who sailed 
with him in 1899 as artist. 

The Prince is further associated with oceanographical research in 
this country, in that during his recent visit he presided at the inaugura- 
tion of the Scottish Oceanographical Laboratory, and was there met by 
a representative gathering of Scottish men of science and others. At 
the close of the meeting the Prince w^as asked by Mr. W. S. Bjuce, the 
Director of the Laboratory, to accept a replica of the medal which had 
been presented to the members of the Scottish National Antarctic Expe- 
dition, as an acknowledgment of the valuable services which he had 
rendered to the expedition by the loan of instruments and in other 
ways, and also as a memento of his association with the new Institu- 
tion. The Prince is thus not only himself a scientific investigator, but 
has also been associated in more than one country with the promotion 
of scientific research by others. 


(mth Map.) 

By Sir Harry H. Johnston, G.C.M.G., K.C.B. 

In 1603 the Scottish people discovered England as a field for adventure 
and enterprise. In the middle of the seventeenth century, and from 
thence to the beginning of the eighteenth, they carried out an ecjually 
remarkable work of exploration and settlement in Ireland. But it was 
after the union of the legislatures of England and Scotland that the 
Scottish people really embarked on their great career as pioneers of dis- 
covery and commercial adventure. Entering then for the first time fully 
into the privilege of subjects of the British Crown under a dynasty still 
Scottish in direct origin, the Scots rapidly made themselves famous in 
the history of the world's development by their enterprise in Central 

^ An Address deliveruil at Selkirk ou Dccemljer 10, 1906, in couuectiou with the uuveiling 
of the centenary memorial panels in the Mungo Park statue. 


America, the West Indies, India and Africa. James Bruce, born at 
Kinnaird House, Stirlingshire, in 1730, was sent to Harrow to be 
educated, and from there was despatched by his father to work in the 
wine business between Spain, northern Portugal, and Great Britain. 
But Bruce's ambitions led him far beyond the Spanish peninsula into 
North Africa, where he was appointed Consul-General, and later on to 
Egypt, from which country he made his celebrated exploration of the 
Blue Nile and Abyssinia. He did not discover, as he had thought, the 
ultimate source of the Nile : that good fortune was to fall jointly to the 
lot of an Englishman, Speke, and a Scotsman, Grant. Were it not very 
certain that the source of the Blue Nile had really been discovered by 
Portuguese missionaries in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and 
that therefore Bruce, unknown to himself, had been forestalled, Scotland 
would have had a two-thii'ds share in the glory of discovering the origin 
of the two upper head-streams of the Nile. Another great Scot, David 
Livingstone, revealed to us the principal sources of the Zambezi and the 
Congo. In 1777 a Scottish explorer, Captain Robert Jacob Gordon, 
discovered the Orange Eiver of South Africa, Avhich has since played 
such a considerable part in the delimitation of South African states. 
Perhaps in proper sec^uence I should have mentioned that the first 
explorer of North Africa (Tunis and Algeria) who gave an account of 
his travels in the more modern style was William Lithgow, who at the 
commencement of the seventeenth century — about 1610 — travelled 
through parts of Algeria and Tunis, During the eighteenth century 
adventurous Scots found their way to Morocco or Algeria, most often 
unwillingly, being captured by Moorish pirates, and making their first 
experiences of Northern Africa as captives. They generally secured their 
freedom through their hard work and skill, obtaining recognition in the 
eyes of some local potentate, or by the more prosaic way of being 
ransomed, or possibly released at the end of some treaty-making with a 
Dey, a Bey, or a Sultan. Apparently some of these Scottish adventurers 
returned to the ports of Morocco or Algeria in a trading, or even in a 
consular capacity, and several of them took part in the newly arisen 
Liverpool trade with West Africa in the eighteenth century, thereby 
finding their way to the Senegal, Gambia, Sierra Leone and the Gold 

The greatest hero, however, of Scottish exploration in the eighteenth 
century was Mungo Park, to honour whose memory we are assembled 
here to-night. It is of him and the results of his work that I shall treat 
principally ; but before I begin to describe his truly remarkable journeys, 
perhaps you will allow me to give some description of their main object — 
the solution of the Niger mystery. 

Towards the close of the eighteenth century, public curiosity as to the 
ultimate source of the Nile was for a time set at rest by the journeys of 
Bruce, Whether or not Bruce had been preceded by the Portuguese, no 
one a hundred odd years ago (except perhaps a French geographer, 
D'Anville) had any doubt that the main stream of the Nile was the 
Abyssinian river. What therefore now attracted scientific curiosity was 
the course and outlet of the Niger. The Greek writers on geography in 


the centuries that preceded the Eoman Empire collected from their 
intercourse with the people of the southern Mediterranean, especially the 
Carthaginians and Egyptians, vague rumours of a fertile, well-watered 
ref^ion beyond the Sahara Desert, faint indications not only of the origin 
an'd course of the Nile, but also of some other Nile, some other great 
river or lake in West Central Africa. The Eomans, when they took 
possession of the North African states, made at least one expedition to 
tlie southern regions of Morocco, and a still more remarkable one under 
Julius Maternus through Tripoli southwards into Fezan, and apparently 
from Fezan to somewhere in the neighbourhood of Bilma, that is to say, 
within no very great distance of Lake Chad. The stories gathered up by 
them and transmitted to us in the writings of Plinius Secundus, who was 
born at Verona in A.D. 23, pay much attention to the geography of 
Morocco, though the southward extent of this country is no doubt much 
exaggerated and confounded in Pliny's mind with vague traditions which 
may have reached him of Carthaginian journeys along the north-west 
coast of Africa. Pliny mentions repeatedly a great river flowing to the 
southward of Morocco called the Gir or Xigir. Much of his information, 
no doubt, relates to the River Draa, which is the southern boundary of 
Morocco, and is a very important watercourse draining the southern part 
of the Atlas Mountains — a river, however, which probably never flows to 
the sea in one continuous stream more than once in every few years, for 
a few weeks. There is nothing about this river to suggest well-watered 
tropical regions, nor are there in it any hippopotami or crocodiles. But 
in his description of the great River Nigir, Pliny, though he places it very 
much where the River Draa is found at the present day, was evidently 
repeating stories of the Bambotus or Senegal of the real Niger. It 
is very nearly certain that the Senegal River had been revealed to the 
knowledge of the Caucasian race by Hanno or other Carthaginian 
maritime adventurers. A knowledge of it spread from Carthaginian 
sources to Greek writers, and the description given of the fauna and of 
the vegetation makes it certain that, some five hundred years before 
Christ, the Mediterranean world had a glimmering knowledge of the 
regions of Atlantic Africa beyond the Sahara Desert ; they knew, that is 
to say, that beyoad the limits of this arid region there were hot lands 
through which copious rivers flowed, lands of strange wild beasts and of 
savage, naked men. Such information as reached the Mediterranean by 
the commencement of the Christian era may have suggested to ancient 
Greeks or Romans the existence in West Africa of another mighty river 
similar in many of its characteristics to the Nile, perhaps even, in the 
minds of some geographers, the ultimate head-waters of the Nile, which 
by an extraordinary curve reached Ethiopia and then turned at right 
angles to the Mediterranean. 

With the irruption of the Barbarians into the Roman Empire, all 
interest in geography died away so far as Western Europe was concerned, 
while the Byzantine I'^mpire limited its curiosity to the regions of the 
East. It was the Arabs who were to take up the geographical work 
commenced by Herodotus and continued by Aristotle and Strabo, Pliny, 
and Ptolemy of Alexandria. The Arabs invaded North Africa in G40 


A.D. They rapidly imparted their religion and language to the Berber 
tribes whom they so strongly resembled in physical characteristics and 
mode of life, even their languages having a very remote affinity. In the 
ninth century the Arabs seem to have penetrated into Negro Africa due 
west from the Nile, and across some old caravan routes from Tripoli to 
the northern bend of the Niger. In the tenth century they had already 
produced maps indicating an actual knowledge of the regions south of 
the Sahara Desert. By about the .year 950 A.d. some of their pioneers 
had travelled along the Atlantic coast south of Morocco till they reach( d 
the mouth of the Senegal. They then wandered eastwards up the course 
of that river and across the water-parting to the UpiJer Niger, on which 
river they probably met other pioneers of Islam who had penetrated 
through the regions of Lake Chad to the northern bend of the Niger. By 
the beginning of the eleventh century Muhammadanism and Arab influence 
had completely dominated the valley of the Niger, from its entry into the 
Sahara Desert near Timbuktu almost to its source. Great Muhammadan 
kingdoms arose in the lands of the Mandingo round about the Upper 
Niger, and the mysterious Fula race between the Niger and the Senegal 
became converted to the faith of Muhammad. In fact, in the eleventh 
century a great proselytising movement led a tribe of Berbers, the 
Murabitin or Moravides, across the Sahara Desert to Morocco and Spain, 
once more reconquering for Islam the Spanish peninsula. This, I think, 
was one of the most extraordinary episodes in the history of Africa : 
that at the commencement of the Middle Ages a wild race of Tawartq 
nomads should start from the Niger and in a very few years overiun 
Morocco, Algeria, and nearly all Spain and Portugal, thus staving oflF 
for another four hundred years the collapse of Islam in Western 

All these movements of Arabs and Arabised Berbers and Negroes 
implanted very firmly in civilised Morocco- — for Morocco w-as then a 
country of high civilisation — the knowledge of the existence of a great 
river in West Africa beyond the Desert. This river was much confused 
with the Senegal. Some people thought that the Niger — as it came 
afterwards to be called — floAved from Lake Chad more or less due west 
till it entered the sea through the mouth of the Senegal. This was the 
impression made on the minds of those European adventurers who 
coasted along North-West Africa in the fourteenth centuiy. Some of the se 
bold Normans from Dieppe, C4enoese or Majorcans, probably visited 
the Senegal. They brought back stories of a river of gold, which 
greatly excited the cupidity and interest of the Portuguese. Through 
their intercourse with Morocco, which they had partially conquered, the 
Portuguese heard from their Moorish captives these stories of the 
Great River beyond the Desert. Being at the same time industrious 
students of the Classics in the revival of learning which had followed 
the erection of Portugal into a Christian kingdom, the Poituguese 
identified the Great River beyond the Desert, the River of Gold, the 
river of crocodiles and sea-horses, with the " Nigir " of Pliny, and it was 
probably the Portuguese who first invented the modern name of the 
river which by a slight variation we call "Niger." 


It seems possible, however, that the were not the first 
amongst the Latin nations to reach AVestern Tropical Africa beyond the 
Sahara Desert. In the thirteenth century the Genoese navigators had 
rediscovered the Canary Islands, and in the fourteenth century Nor- 
mans from Dieppe, Genoese and Catalans from Majorca, had sailed down 
past the limits of the Sahara to the Senegal Kiver, and even onwards to 
the coast of modern Liberia (where the Norman French claimed to have 
established themselves for nearly a hundred years) as far as Elmina on the 
Gold Coast. The Genoese navigators even may have penetrated further, 
and perhaps may have returned in safety, but leaving no definite record 
of their achievement; for all Italian maps of the fourteenth and early 
fifteenth centuries, sixty or seventy years at least before the Portuguese 
discoveries, gave a delineation of the African continent which on its 
west coast is strikingly like actuality. But from various causes to do 
with European history, these efforts emanating from the south coast of 
the British Channel and the north coast of the Mediterranean came to 
an end in the early part of the fifteenth century, or were fused with the 
now stirring tale of Portuguese adventure which began under the direct 
impulse of Prince Henry the Navigator. Genoese and Venetian captains 
took service with the crown of Portugal. In 1444 the Portuguese ships 
reached the mouth of the Senegal River. This was at the time 
identified with the River of Gold or the Western Nile of the Arabs or 
with the Nigir or Niger of Pliny. In 1456 the remarkable Venetian 
navigator, Ca' da Mosto, in the service of Portugal visited the Senegal 
and Gambia Rivers, and appears to have made a journey inland for some 
distance along the course of the Senegal. From intercourse with the 
Moors he brought back stories of the Niger River and Timbuktu, and 
above all of a wonderful city or country called Guint- or Ghinala. These 
stories seem to have had for origin the remarkable civilisation of Jene, a 
well-known town and district on the Upper Niger, constantly the head- 
quarters of a powerful Muhammadan kingdom either under the Man- 
dingos or the Fulas. 

From this time onwards till the eighteenth century either the 
Senegal or the Gambia were looked upon as the outlet into the sea of a 
great river flowing from a lake in the heart of Africa (Lake Chad, in 
fact) to the Atlantic. The Moorish stories of a great watercourse run- 
ning east and west ^ muddled European geography for several centuries. 
All round the Atlantic coast of Guinea may be observed one great 
estuary after another. Every few miles from the Senegal southward 
one encounters an important river mouth. It might well be supposed, 
therefore, that these multitudinous estuaries constituted perhaps the 
vast delta of a great river draining at least a third of tropical Africa. 
Besides the thirst for gold, which for a time was partially .slaked by the 
discovery of the Gold C >ast, European covetousness was attracted towards 
the basin of the Niger, a land which was felt vaguely to be analogous to 
the Moslem Exst. Portuguese explorers had penetrated inland from the 

1 The Seuegal, Niger, Koiuaiugu, Lake Chad and Bahv-el-Ghazal appearc-d eviiKutly to 
the first Arab explorers to be one continuous waterway. 


Cxokl Coast to the verge of the Xiger watershed in that direction, at any 
rate to lands beyond the forest, under the influence of some semi-civilised 
Muhammadan peoples. The civilisation, in fact, of the Niger basin 
between the sources of that river and the falls of Bussa was very nearly 
on a par with the European civilisation of the fifteenth and sixteenth 
centuries. There is very little doubt that the valley of the Upper Niger 
north of 10° N. lat. has for many centuries been lifted above mere 
savagery — above that savagery which was the almost unbroken quality of 
the Guinea coast belt from the Gambia to the Niger Delta, the Congo 
and the Cape of Good Hope, prior to the Portuguese settlement of the 
fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Some have even supposed that the 
influence of the Caucasian, wliich is everywhere, I believe (except in 
America), synonymous with the Neolithic Age and the raising of Man 
from a condition of barbarism, emanated from Ancient Egypt : that 
something of Egyptian civilisation, including the domestic animals of 
Egypt, found its way from the middle Nile across Kordofan and Darfur 
to the basin of Lake Chad and thence to the Upper Niger, while at a 
later date the Libyans of North Africa and the Sahara Desert, who are 
absolutely of Caucasian stock, found their way across the Sahara Desert 
with the aid of oxen and camels and permeated the healthy regions of 
the Upper Niger. Some, like myself, believe the Fulas to have been a 
Caucasian race of North Africa speaking a type of language antecedent 
to the Berber and Semitic tongues, and driven from North-West Africa 
into Negro-laud by the advent of tlie Iberians, who brought with them 
from southern Europe a type of language from which the modern 
Hamitic and Semitic tongues are descended. At any rate the civilisa- 
tion of the Niger seems to be older than the irruption of Islam and the 
Islamic Arabs and Moors into that region. 

It was therefore towards something like a western India, a laud of 
gold, and also a land of well-clothed, turbaned people riding on horses 
or donkeys, a land of well-built cities and much material comfort, that 
European adventure was so strongly attracted from the fifteenth century 
onwards. The British were not slow to be infected with this search for 
the Niger River and the far-famed city of Timbuktu. In the seventeenth 
century a British company was formed to explore the Gambia with the 
object of reaching the Niger. The first explorer sent out by this enter- 
prise, Richard Thomson, eventually met with a disaster, being murdered 
at the instigation of the Portuguese, but he was succeeded by Richard 
Jobson, who ventured a considerable distance up the Gambia — about 
three hundred miles. He failed, however, to reach the Niger, and for 
nearly a hundred years enterprise in this direction on the part of the 
British was stopped. The French, however, had taken the matter up 
by way of the Senegal. Their explorations, however, showed con- 
clusively that the Senegal and the Gambia also were rivers quite 
independent of the Niger system. This was confirmed by Captain 
Bartholomew Stibbs, who explored the Gambia on behalf of a British 
company in 1723. 

In the middle of the eighteenth century, Lord Halifax, a British 
statesman, became much interested in African exploration, especially as 


regards the source of the Nile, It was he who made the great Scottish 
traveller, Bruce — one of the first scientific explorers — Consul or Consul- 
General in Algeria, and then furnished him with the means to penetrate 
far into North-Eastern Africa. Bruce's preliminary work in Algeria, 
Tunis and Tripoli so whetted the curiosity of scientific men in England 
and Scotland as to the marvels of interior Africa that it led indirectly 
to the foundation of the African Association, which proved such a potent 
instrument in African discovery, and which was the direct parent of the 
Royal Geographical Society of London. The moving spirit of this 
association was Sir Joseph Banks, and it was Sir Joseph Banks who 
selected ]\rungo Park for the exploration of the Niger. The African 
Association had despatched a daring but too eccentric American seaman, 
Ledyard, to Egypt, with the idea that he should cross the African 
continent and come out on the Guinea coast, but he died soon after his 
arrival in Egypt. Another traveller despatched in 1789 was Horneman, 
an ancestor, I believe, of the founder of the famous tea firm. Horneman, 
we now know, made a most marvellous journey. He started from Tripoli 
in 1789, crossed the Sahara, and almost, if not quite, reached the Lower 
Niger. He seems to have died in the Nupe country, which is now 
the headquarters of British administration in Nigeria. Had Horneman 
not succumbed to dysentery or fever, he would certainly have attempted 
to follow the great river to its outlet in the sea, and might thus have 
forestalled by something like fifty years the ultimate discovery of 
Richard Lander. Major Houghton was sent by the Association to 
the Gambia. He reached the Upper Niger from this direction, the 
country of Bambuk, and the Upper Senegal, but was misled by Moorish 
tribes into entering the Desert, where he was finally killed or left 
to die. 

All this time, though no European had yet returned to tell of actual 
vision of the Niger waters, there was no doubt whatever in the mind 
of educated Europe that Western Africa did possess a mighty water- 
course, rising somewhere behind the mountains of Senegambia and flow- 
ing eastwards. What became of the river then was a matter of much 
disputed conjecture. Some geographers held that it ended in Lake 
Chad, a great inland sea of Central Africa which had no outlet. Others 
believed that the Niger after flowing past Timbuktu took a southern 
bend (which was quite true) and flowing down through the Equatorial 
regions of Western Africa, entered the sea under the name of Congo. 
This was the theory favoured by Mungo Park, and one which was not 
completely disproved till the journey of Richard and John Lander in 
18.32 finally solved all doubt by proving the Niger to possess about fifteen 
outlets into the Bight of Benin. 

When Major Houghton had disappeared, the African Society looked 
about for another explorer to search for and relieve Houghton, and if neces- 
sary to continue his task. Their choice fell, through the influence of Sir 
Joseph Banks, on a young Scottish surgeon, Mungo Park, who was 
born at Foulshiels, four and a half miles from Selkiik, on the 10th of 
September 1771. He was, as you know, the seventh child of a family 
of thirteen ; his father, Thomas Park, being a small farmer, who, after 


the manner of his class and country, determined to give all his children 
the best possible education. Fortunately, perhaps, for the fulfilment of 
his desire, Fate or Providence thinned out the family of thirteen to 
eight. jNTungo, in common with most of his brothers and sisters, was 
first educated at home by a teacher, and then transferred to the Selkirk 
Grammar School, to which he Avalked backwards and forwards most 
days in the week — a distance of nine miles. At fifteen years of age 
he became apprenticed to Dr. Thomas Anderson, a surgeon in Selkirk, 
whose descendants, I believe, are amongst Selkirk's citizens at the 
present day. 

In 1789 Mungo Park entered the Edinburgh University to complete 
his medical studies, during which time he gave special attention to 
botany. This taste had a decisive effect on his career, for it brought him 
into close relations with a clever young gardener and botanical student, 
James Dickson, who married one of Park's sisters. Dickson came to 
know Sir Joseph Banks, who had himself given Dickson a botanical 
appointment in London. Through Sir Joseph Banks' influence Park 
was appointed surgeon to an East India Company's ship, and under 
these auspices Park accomplished a sufficiently noteworthy voyage to 
Sumatra and other parts of the East Indies, where he made collections 
of Natural History. On his return, when he was twenty-four years of 
age, through the influence of Sir Joseph Banks he was selected by the 
African Association alluded to already. 

On the 21st of June 1795 he landed at the mouth of the Gambia, 
where he was obliged to remain until the beginning of October. On the 
2nd of December in the same year he left the navigable regions of the 
Upper Gambia and directed his little caravan toward the Upper Senegal. 
Between the Faleme and the main Senegal Kiver, however, he met with 
almost insuperable difliculties. His goods were plundered, his followers 
dispersed, and he was reduced almost to death by starvation till he was 
pitied and relieved by an old woman. At this juncture also there came 
on the scene the son of a great Mandingo chief of the Upper Senegal, 
who, thinking that his father might like to see a real white man, took 
Park along with him to his father, the King of Kason, whose country 
lay round about the modern French station of Kayt^s. From this point 
the Senegal is navigable almost all the year round to the sea. This, in 
fact, was the country of Bambuk which has always played an important 
part in AVest African history. From here he made his way to Kaarta, 
still in the land of Negroes, though a region bordering on the Sahara. 
Consciously or unconsciously, he was following the same route as 
Houghton. Although longing to proceed due east and strike the Niger, 
native wars and rumours of wars kept heading him oft" in the direction 
of the Sahara Desert and the land of the Moors. These Moors were 
distinctly different to the Tamasheq (Tawareq) of the more central parts 
of the Sahara, who founded Timbuktu in the eleventh century, and who 
ever since have been intermittent raiders of the northern bend of the 
Niger. The "Moors" who are to be met with along the north bank of 
the Senegal and in the western limits of the Sahara Desert are allied 
in origin to the Tawereq, but are a good deal more mixed with Negro 



and Arab blood. Some of them si)eak the Zenaga dialect of that great 
group of Berber tongues which includes the language of the Tamasheq 
(Tawareq or Touareg) also. But a debased form of Arabic (" Hassanieh ") 
more ordinarily prevails amongst them. The Sultan of Ludamar was 
the chief of a section of these Moorish tribes, and a man probably of 
mainly Arab descent. He enticed Park and his two remaining servants, 
Johnson and Demba, into his possession. Between February and June 
1796 Mungo Park was treated like a mouse captured by a cat. The 
detestable Arab-Moorish hybrids, sometimes known as the Hassanieh 
tribe, submitted him to every indignity and considerable torture. Again 

The Niger Ba^ill. 

and again they were within an inch of killing him. Sometimes he would 
be allowed a deceptive amount of personal liberty, so that he would 
escape and perhaps travel a hundred miles or so from their clutches, only 
however to be captured, brought back, and worse treated than ever. He 
was robbed little by little of his possessions. Once, he tells us, he was 
shut up in a hut with a wild hog, any species of pig appearing to these 
fanatical Muharamadans to be the vilest of animals, and consequently to 
have a natural affinity with Cliristians. Strange to say, however, the 
pig did not attack Park, but frequently charged and gored his tormentors. 
His faithful personal attendant, Demba, was sold into slavery, and never 
heard of ariy more. Tue other, an Anglicised Negro named Johnson, 


worn out with constant terror and privations, lost all hope, and refused 
at the last moment to accompany Mungo Park on his second attempt at 
escape. Park during his captivity would have died several times from 
sheer starvation had he not been taken pity on by some of the Moorish 
women, especially by a certain Fatima, the wife of his principal 
tormentor, Ali. Fatima was a mountain of flesh, as are all the high- 
caste women in the harems of these Moors. She took a capricious liking 
to Park from his good looks, which were apparent even when he was 
emaciated with hunger and fatigue. Indeed, through all these 
adventures in Africa women befriended him, old and young alike. 
Generally at some crisis a woman provided him with food or shelter. 
Yet it is amusing to read that the Moors, women and men alike, 
reproached Park with being grossly indecent, because he wore the 
European clothes which were fashionable at the end of the eighteenth 
and beginning of the nineteenth centuries. Though these persons were 
almost without an elementary idea of morality — were even, one might 
say, depraved — they considered that the human form should be as little 
revealed as possible, and shrouded in voluminous garments. It is 
perhaps somewhat extraordinary that Muugo Park, like several other 
African explorers of the same date, in the North as well as in the tropical 
regions, clung so tenaciously to European clothing, obviously unfitted as 
the fashions of that da}^ were for African travel, besides the fact that 
they made the white man at once c^nsjticuous; whereas clad in Arab or 
Moorish fashion he might have p.issed through these regions without 
undue notice or opposition. 

When in the month of February 1796, Park left the Moorish camp 
before the dawn, jumped on to a horse, aad galloped for freedom, he had 
embarked upon the most critical period of his life until that last struggle 
with the rapids of the Lower Xiger which terminated his existence. 
He had to ride from the verge of the Sahara through the Negro country 
of Bambara. Much of the northern part of this country was waterless. 
Park was sometimes five days at a time without a drink of water, which 
he then only obtained from some chance rainfall. There was fortunately 
a certain amount of herbage which ke})t his horse alive, and he himself 
would assuage the agonies of thirst by chewing leaves. As often as not 
the storms which seemed to promise relief were only dust storms, and 
added to his agonies of thirst. Occasionally he would be unable to 
approach a well or a stream-bed because the way to the water-supply 
was obstructed or guarded by fierce lions. The journey was by no 
means devoid of human beings, but from none of these did he derive 
anything but harsh treatment. Much of the country had to be 
accomplished on foot, the horse being too weak to bear him. If his 
resistance to the agonies of thirst is wonderful, it strikes the reader of 
his experiences how more remarkable was that bodily strength which 
enabled him to exist, walking or riding, for a week or ten days at a 
time with practically no more food than could be derived from the 
chewing of leaves or roots, or an occasional handful of beans tossed to 
him by some half-contemptuous Negro. 

But at last he got near to the Bambara capital of Segu, and to his great 


relief his reception at the hands of the Negro king was a friendly one, 
though the king, influenced by Moorish visitors at his court, refused to 
see Park personally. It was when waiting to cross the Niger at Segu, 
"shunned and treated like a pariah," that he received unexpected 
hospitality and kindness from a negress, who, while he rested, sang with 
her companions that song which Park inscribed in his book, and which 
has been so often quoted : — 

"The winds roared and the rains fell. 
The poor white man sat under our tree. 
He has no mother to bring him milk, 
No wife to grind his corn. 
Let us pity the white man ; 
No mother has he."' 

From Segu, Park travelled along the north bank of the Niger to 
Sansandig, where he was again harassed by the detestable Moors. His 
journey extended along the Niger banks for another eighty miles east- 
wards; but he stopped short before reaching Lake Debo owing to the 
utter destitution of his condition and the hostility of the Moorish 
merchants (whose denunciation of him dissuaded the Negroes and Fulas 
from showing him hospitality). His clothes were reduced to rags. He 
had absolutely no means with which to buy food, having parted even 
with the brass buttons of his coat in return for such hospitality as bad 
been shown him. Amongst the tortures he endured at that time were 
mosquito bites. The whole valley of the Niger was swarming with 
mosquitoes, and every night was renewed miseiy. How under these con- 
ditions — alone, half-naked, and absolutely without means — he ever 
succeeded in returning to the coast, is one of the marvels of African 

For some time past he had been without his faithful horse, which he 
had lelt behind in an emaciated condition at a place called Madibu. 
After returning on foot from his furthest exploration of the Niger, and 
again at the point of despair, having been very badly treated by a Negro 
guide, he raised his voice in expostulation in the streets of this town of 
Madibu, and to his surprise Avas answered by the loud neighing of 
a horse. At that moment the head man of the town came up to him 
and asked if he knew who was speaking to him. Park looked puzzled, 
and the man explained his jest by saying that the neighing came from 
Park's own horse which he had left behind, thinking it was dying, which 
had recovered, and now recognised its master's voice. 

But his troubles were far from being over, though it was a great joy 
to regain possession of the faithful steed. The rains had burst in their 
fullest violence in the month of August. As he retraced his steps along 
the Niger banks the Moors renewed their persecution. He was driven 
from village to villaj;e, often without food or shelter, sometimes within 
an ace of being killed by lions, which in those days seem to have infested 
this country in extraordinaiy numbers. Whenever his life was saved 
by timely food or shelter, it was a Negro who showed this kindness. 
Moors, Arabs, and Fulas evinced an unwavering hostility towards the 
white man. Yet it is regrettable to note that Park apparently to the 


end of his days could not bring himself to condemn the Slave Trade. The 
only thing which excited his compassion, in the horrors of which he was 
one of the principal witnesses, was the fate of the intelligent Muham- 
madans of the superior, almost Caucasian races — Arab or Fula hybrids — 
being sent into captivity. For the poor simple-minded black Negro, 
the one type of humanity that had made his exploration of the Niger 
possible, he had little to say. 

Ou his return journey he traced the course of the Niger upwards as 
far as Bammako. Here, curiously enough, the Moors showed themselves 
very civil, and sent the traveller rice and milk. Leaving Bammako to 
travel through the Fula country of Handing, Park was set upon by Fula 
robbers, who stripped Him naked, robbing him even of his liat. \Yhen 
he protested they were within an ace of shooting him, but as they rode 
away, one of the Fulas, more compassionate than the rest, threw back to 
him his hat, shirt, and trousers. Park was transported with delight, for 
in the lining of the hat were hidden the precious notes that he had made 
of his journey. Once again he was rescued by Negroes, and Negroes on 
his subsequent journey across the mountains towards the Gambia nursed 
him when he was ill with fever, and kept him as their guest for months 
till he regained his strength. At last he joined a Muhammadan slave 
caravan, and under its escort reached the navigable waters of the Gambia, 
where, of course, he found that he had long since been given up for dead. 
From the mouth of the Gambia his journey home was still one of ill-luck. 
He started in a slave ship bound for the United States. The ship was 
so unseaworthy that it had to put into the island of Antigua in the 
West Indies. Here, fortunately, he obtained a passage in a fast sailing 
vessel which landed him at Falmouth on the 22nd of December 1797. 
He had been absent from England two years and nine months. 

Arrived in London, Park devoted himself to writing an account of 
his travels. He then returned to Foulshiels, and spent much of the year 
1798 in the vicinity of Selkirk. In the summer of 1799 he married 
Miss Anderson, the daughter of his old master and teacher, Dr. Anderson. 
They had a happy mai'ried life (during which three children were born), 
until the close of 1803, when he was invited to visit the Colonial Office 
in London. Between 1799 and 1803 Park practised as a surgeon at 
Peebles, but was constantly visited with restless longings to add to his 
achievements as an explorer. The British Government now offered him 
the command of an expedition to explore the course of the Niger. He 
accepted the commission. Various delays occurred in its equipment, 
but at last, on the 3 1st of January 1806, he started from England, accom- 
panied by Dr. Anderson and Mr. George Scott, both of them from 
Selkirk or the vicinity. He also took with him five boat-builders 
or carpenters. At the island of Goree, which is in the harbour of Dakar 
(now the capital of French West Africa, but then a British possession), 
Park picked up Lieutenant Martyn, thirty-five British soldiers, and two 
bluejackets. With this force, which rode donkeys that had been shipped 
from the Cape Verde Islands, he ascended the Gambia, and on the 27th 
of April 1805 set out from the upper navigable reaches of that river in 
the direction of the Niger. He reached Bammako on the Niger at the 


end of August with only sevta survivors out of the foity Europeans w ho 
had started with him from the Gambia. Xone of these Europeans were 
of any real aid to Park owing to their inexperience of African travel, 
their over-indulgence in alcohol, and the extent to which they suffered 
from fever ; but he had with him a Mandingo head-man, Isaac or Izako, 
who was often of great assistance, and whose ultimate action in regard 
to Mungo Paik probably rescued for us the only evidence we have of his 
second exploration of the Niger. Alexander Anderson, his brother-in- 
law, to whom he was devotedly attached, died on the 28th of October 
1805, and Scott soon afterwards. Nevertheless, with Lieutenant Mart}n 
and the remaining Europeans (Martyn unfortunately seems to have been 
a man of very different calibre and usefulness to either Scott or Ander- 
son), Mungo Park left Sansandig on the Upper Niger at the end of 
November 1805 in a sailing vessel which he had rigged out in prepara- 
tion for his journey of discovery down the Niger. His crew consisted of 
Martyn, three British soldiers (one of whom was mad, while the others 
were sick), Amadi Fatuma (a Mandingo guide), and three Negro slaves. 

From the subsequent information collected by Izako from Amadi 
Fatuma, who was the sole survivor of the expedition, we gather that 
Park, after leaving Sansandig, journeyed almost uninterruptedly down 
the course of the Niger as far as Yauri, a place on the Niger some 
distance to the north of the Bussa rapids. Park's expedition had been 
attacked by natives near Lake Debo, and again in the vicinity of Tim- 
buktu. At the Tosaye rapids fresh attacks took place on the part of the 
Tawareq, while the vessel was nearly lost on the rocks with which the 
river began to be strewn. But after leaving the Ansonga rapids the 
expedition had a long stretch of uninterrupted navigation, especially 
when they entered the Hausa country, and therefore Park dismissed his 
faithful interpreter, Amadi Fatuma, at Yauri, believing that he was now 
in close proximity to the Gulf of Guinea. Moreover, as from this point 
southwards he expected to travel through Negro lands, he felt assured of 
a friendly reception. Unfortunately, Lieutenant Martyn was the worst 
possible assistant under these circumstances. His one idea seems to have 
been to shoot at any native gathering of suspicious aspect or intentions. 
The hostilities increased concurrently with the frightful difficulty of 
navigating the Bussa rapids. At last the prow of the vessel stuck in the 
cleft of a rock, and in despair Park and his companions jumped into the 
water, where they were either droAvned or killed by the weapons of the 
enraged Negroes. Only one boatman (a slave) survived this disaster. 

We must not be too severe perhaps even on the memory of Martyn. 
It must be remembered that the appearance of the white man in the 
lands of the Niger was a serious portent to the intelligent Fula, to the 
Arabised Moor, and to the Tawareq of the desert. They already realised 
that in the Northern Caucasian they themselves saw a future master, one 
who was going to set their world to rights. Therefore wherever Park 
went with his expedition they received him with undisguised hostility. 
The rumour of war spreads easily in Africa, and no doubt long before 
Park himself arrived within their gates the Negroes of Bussa heard an 
exaggerated account of the slaughter w'hich was being effected by the 


white man's weapons. Nevertheless it was a cruel tragedy which robbed 
this gallant pioneer of the complete accomplishment of his task. 

It was long before his family believed that Park was really dead, 
despite the fact that the British Government despatched Izako to collect 
positive evidence, and that Izako even succeeded in bringing back Park's 
sword-belt from the King of Yauri. As late as the year 1827, Thomas 
Park, the explorer's second son, .seized an opportunity of landing on the 
Gold Coast, and started for the interior to search for his father. He 
died or was killed on the borders of Ashanti. 

Not even when Izako returned with all the intelligence he could 
collect as to the fate of Park's expedition was it realised hoAV near the 
great explorer had been to solving the whole secret of the Niger, that 
he had died in fact at a spot only some four hundred miles in a direct 
line from the Gulf of Guinea. The first calculations as to the extent of 
his exploration only carried the Niger eastwards about a hundred miles 
beyond Timbuktu. Nevertheless in 1808 a clever German geographer, 
Reichardt, had published a guess to the eft'ect that the final outlet of the 
Niger was contained in that huge delta of rivers — in fact, what we now 
know as the Niger Delta, in the Bight of Benin. Very little notice was 
taken of this. Nor was there even much attention paid to the still 
more remarkable deductions of M'Queen. M'Queen was a Scotsman 
who resided for a time in the West Indies, and there came into contact 
with Mandingo slaves, one or two of whom had actually known Park on 
the Niger. For years he collated the accounts given to him by intelligent 
Negroes in the West Indies, and in 1816, and again in 1821, he 
published theories as to the course of the Niger and its outlet into the 
Bight of Benin which traced its course with astonishing accuracy. 
Nevertheless a considerable volume of scientific opinion held that the 
Niger could not cut its way through the continuous range of the Kong 
Mountains, which theorists had drawn all round the West African coast- 
belt. The theory that the Niger was lost in the wastes of the Sahara 
was too disappointing to be entertained. Consequently the Congo was 
considered its only possible outlet, and Captain Tuckey was sent out by 
the British Government to the mouth of the Congo to trace that river up 
till it ended in Mungo Park's Niger. His expedition was a complete 

Then a new way of approaching the Niger regions was suggested, 
and Denham and Clapperton and Oudney were despatched by the 
British Government from Tripoli to cross the Sahara. This they did 
with extraordinary success. They discovered Lake Chad and the Shari 
River, and finally Clapperton reached the vicinity of the Niger at Sokoto. 
But the Tula sultan would not allow him to continue his journey to the 
great river. He therefore returned to England, and was again despatched 
to West Africa. Amongst his companions, all of whom soon died after 
leaving the Gulf of Benin, was Richard Lander, a Cornishman. Clapper- 
ton and Lander jjassed through Yoruba, and reached the Niger almost 
at the exact spot where Park had been killed. Clapperton then pro- 
ceeded by a devious course to Sokoto, where he died of fever. His 
faithful companion. Lander, returned to England. Under discouraging 


circumstances, and with very paltry encouragement from the British 
Government, Richard Lander with his brother John went out again to 
West Africa, landed at Badagry, a place near Lagos, and thence reached 
Yauri on the Niger. The brothers Lander navigated the river down 
stream till its junction with the Benue, and thence southwards into the 
fierce Pagan cannibal country of the Lower Niger and its delta. After 
overcoming tremendous difficulties, they issued from the main stream of 
the Niger through the Brass River to the breakers of the Atlantic 
Ocean, They had completed Mungo Park's exploration down to 
the sea. 

There then only remained to trace the main stream of the Niger to its 
source. The sources of the Niger were perhaps actually discovered by 
two French explorers, Zweifeland Moustier, and by the English traveller, 
Winwood Rede, in the sixties of the nineteenth century. 

The ultimate history of Niger exploration has been a division of 
glories between Britain and France, with some share also to be attributed 
to the eminent German, Flegel. The region drained by this great river 
is partly under French and partly under British administration. The 
great names — so far as Britain is concerned — in this work are also 
Scottish in descent, if not always in birthplace. Amongst them must be 
mentioned MacGregor Laird, who practically founded the British naviga 
tion of the Lower Niger, and that fleet of trading vessels now belonging to 
Messrs. Elder Dempster, with its shipbuilding yards at Glasgow ; Joseph 
Thomson, who made the most important treaties that extended British 
influence over Northern Nigeria (and who has written an admirable Life 
of Mungo Park) ; and Sir George Taubman Goldie, whose family, I believe, 
originated not far from Selkirk, who was the political founder of the 
British dominions of vast extent which lie between the Niger, the Benue 
and Lake Chad. Perhaps also I may venture to attach my own name 
with due humility to the long list of "Nigerians," as also being one of 
Scottish descent, for to your lecturer of to-night fell the lot of organising 
the beginnings of the British Protectorate of Southern Nigeria, in that 
Delta of the river which Mungo Park very nearly succeeded in tracing 
to its outlet in the ocean : that river with which his name must remain 
for ever connected, like that of Speke with the Nile, Stanley with the 
Congo, and Livingstone with the Zambezi. 


{With Map.) 

By H, Crawford Angus. 

Though the boundaries of the Western Shir6have been defined upon 
the map, and several of the more important rivers and mountains have 
bden approximately denoted, yet very little seems to be even yet knoMn 


of the country through which the frontier line passes, and several errors 
are apparent in the course of rivers, the position of mountains, and 
names of places, on the latest maps, which facts lead me to conclude 
that, though the country has been roughly triangulated, no more detailed 
survey has been executed, the significant words " from native informa- 
tion " being often noticed on recent surveys. 

Having lived in that j)ortion of Central Africa for nearly two years, 
engaged in hunting and trading, I acquired a very intimate knowledge 
of its geographical features, and it is therefore my purpose, while 
describing the lesser characters of this frontier country, to point out 
some of the omissions and errors which are noticeable in the current 
majjs of that locality. 

At the time that I first penetrated into this district, it was practi- 
cally unknown, and, as far as I could ascertain, I was the first European 
who had ever travelled in that region. None of the chiefs, and hardly any 
of the inhabitants, had ever seen a white man, and no intercourse was 
held with the neighbouring tribes. There were no routes or paths 
leading to the country, and the only way of reaching it was to travel 
through the jungle. 

There were several reasons for this state of things, the chief of which 
were the evil reputation which the inhabitants had acquired from their 
warlike habits and their use of poison, which facts caused trading 
caravans to avoid the district and proceed to the Zambezi or Shire by 
other routes, and the constant warfare in which the inhabitants were 
engaged Avith the Angoni in the North, the Makololo in the South Shire 
districts, and the Portuguese and their ally Chinsinga in the Zambezi 
districts north of Tete. This state of war was responsible for the 
absence of the ordinary native paths, which in that country act as 
means of intercommunication, the people being in the habit of avoiding 
making defined tracks through the jungle in order that their enemies 
might have no clue to their strongholds. Finally, another cause is the 
suspicious and turbulent character of the inhabitants themselves. At 
the time I write of, the Anglo-Portuguese boundary, though laid down in 
theory, had not yet been defined, and the Central African Administration 
being elsewhere engaged in " peaceful penetration," had not taken any 
steps to bring the district on their side of the frontier under their rule, 
while the Portuguese, on their side, had been powerless to make their 
rule acknowledged. 

These, then, were the reasons to which were due the unexplored state 
of the district, which is an important district, being the watershed of 
the Shire and Zambezi rivers. 

The columns of a geographical magazine are not the place to discuss 
anthropological subjects, but the effect of geographical surroundings has 
such an important bearing on the lives and customs of the inhabitants 
that I must permit myself a short reference to them. 

There are two tribes inhabiting this country, the one occupying the 
mountainous region between the Revubwi and Mwanza rivers, and the 
other the country lying between the Revubwi and the Kapochi. My 
observations concern mainly the former, who are termed "Azimba," 



and my acquaintance with the latter, termed "Achipeta," was less 


I am very much inclined to think that the origin of these two tribes 
is different, though some persons have considered them to spring from 
the same source, but this I do not think likely ; and while, so far as I 
can ascertain, the Azimba are directly descended from the original 
inhabitants of the country which they at present inhabit, the Achipeta 
I consider a tribe originally living beyond the Loangwa river, who were 
forced east by the Zulu emigration northwards under Kazunga-ndawa. 
Though I have stated that the Achipeta country lies between the 
Kapochi and Eevubwi rivers, yet kindred tribes inhabit all that country 
beyond the Kapochi as far as the Loangwa, and have their strongholds 
wherever there is a rocky eminence or mountain. Under various names, 
as Asenga, Avisa, the country inhabited by them stretches far north, 
circling round the borders of Northern Angoniland. But the Azimba 
are only to be found in that small portion of territory bounded by the 
Shir6 on the east, the Revubwi on the west, Central Angoniland on the 
north, and Makanga country and Mikolongo on the south. 

The customs of the two tribes are also distinctly and unmistakably 
different. Their initiation ceremonies, their funeral and marriage rites, 
their mode of dress and hair-dressing, their weapons, all differ, and their 
lan^uajze and intonation are also so different, that the two people can 
hardly understand each other. 

One important point is, that though the Azimba have knowledge of 
various poisons Avhich they use for the capture of game and fish, and to 
mix in the food and water of their enemies, yet they have no knowledge 
of the poison with which the Achipeta smear their war arrows, and look 
on the custom with horror. Indeed I have seen them cry out with fear 
and bolt precipitately on occasions when these arrows have been used 
against them. 

I was at some pains to go into the history of the Azimba tribe 
during my residence amongst them, and what I gathered I shall relate 
as briefly as I can. 

When I first came in contact with them, I found that they were 
split into five portions or small clans. The one under Ndifula and his 
brother inhabited the Mount of Zobwi and Nyamba-chikopa — the 
place of torn shields, named from a fight which took place there with 
the Angoni, in which the latter were beaten — and claimed all 
the country as far as the banks of the Mwanza river on the east 
and the river Nkombedzi on the west. Another clan, the most 
powerful, under Kasuza, inhabited Mount Ntapassa, and claimed 
territory from the banks of the Nkombedzi river as far north as the 
borders of Angoniland, and as far west as the rear side of Mount 
Xtapassa, where the country of Mombusa commences, and goes west as 
far as the Revubwi river, both countries reacliing south as far as Miko- 
longo and Makanga. Further northwest was another chief, Goruza, 
who claimed from the nortliern boundary of Mombusa's country to the 
banks of the river Dwembi northwards ; eastwards to Kasuza's boundary, 
and westwards to the Revubwi ; and still further north, beyond 


Goruza's boundary, on the Dwembi, was Matiweri and his mother, 
Nyangu, the real chief, with boundaries on the Dwembi, the Eevubwi, 
Angoniland, and Kasuza's country. 

These were the five clans, and it is interesting to see how a people, 
once evidently powerful and united, came to be split up into factions 
always warring with each other. 

I may as well give the tribes' history by the mouth of Goruza, the 
man who related it to me : — 

" Long ago we were a powerful people, and all that country you 
passed through, all across that plain where runs the Nkombedzi, our 
villages were thick, and instead of trees was all maize fields and millet. 
In those days the elephants used to come in herds to trample our corn, 
and we used to kill many, and get much ivory ; now there is nothing to 
fill even one elephant, and I have to catch monkeys and sell their skins 
to buy powder. But all this was long ago, before I was born, or before 
my father's father was born. Then we were under one chief, and were 
strong in war, so that all the people about us gave us peace, and we sold 
them our ivory for many slaves ; now we live like mice in holes, and 
are harried by every one. Do not the Angoni call us ' the mice that 
God has given them to kill — Zimbewa za raalunga.' 

" Along the Mwanza were tobacco fields, and at Chuwali (on the 
Eevubwi) we grew rice, so you may see how big a land we ate u^), and 
right as far as Nsanganu we made new gardens. To-day you can see 
the marks of our rubbish heaps at the head of the Makurumadzi. 
Wasn't that a big land to cover 1 but we covered it as easily as I cover 
my body with this little piece of bark cloth, which is so old that even the 
lice cannot hide in it any more, not like the thick cotton cloth the white 
man has in his tent. 

"But all this was swallowed up, washed away like the Nkombedzi 
in flood washes the dead leaves, when the Angoni came. For first we 
had trouble with the Achipeta, with whom we used to barter iron and 
ivory, which they sold to the Arab traders, who came down the Loangwa. 
For they came to us and wanted to take our land, as they had been 
beaten in war by a great tribe, whom we did not then know were the 
Angoni. And they wanted to come into our place, but it is ill making 
room for a beaten people, as when the lion wounds his prey he follows 
it and then he kills where he goes. So we refused them, and fought 
and beat them beyond the Revubwi. For a long time we heard tales of 
men armed, with the skins of cows and with goats' hair on their heads, 
but they never troubled us till after I was born. I was born at Zobwi, 
and my father had all the land down to the Makurumadzi. And then 
one day the news came that fire had been put to our villages at Nsan- 
ganu, and a strong tribe was eating up our people there ; but we did 
not fear, for we did not then know these Angoni. So all our men went 
out to meet them, and we fought a great fight all from Nsanganu down 
to Kalangombe.^ 

1 The resting place of oxen — named so froiu the fact that the Angoni halted there when 
taking their cattle to Tete ; the name is, therefore, evidently subsequent to the Angoni 


" For weeks we fought, but always the Angoui brought up fresh men, 
and we were compelled to fall back. And so it went on for years, until 
at last we were driven to the hills, and even then we had to hide in 
caves, and grow our maize in hollows of the rocks, and many of us were 
caught and killed, and many made slaves, until very few of us were left. 
When it came to that — I was a grown man then, and had a wife and a 
child — we saw that to stay on here was simply to give our bodies to 
wash the Angoni spears in sport, and Kasuza's father called us all 
together, and after burning our houses and breaking our pots, we went 
down and offered submission to Kankuni, the father of Chinsinga, who 
was a friend of the Portuguese, and owned Makanga country. We had 
always fought them till then, but now, even though we were a weak 
people, he wanted us, as we were good hunters, and he knew we Avould 
bring him ivory. Also he was at war with the Angoni and needed help. 
We may have been slaves to go to him, but at least we could carry on 
our dances and initiations in the j^roper way ; when living like rock 
rabbits, we could not teach the young girls and boys, and we had only 
water enough to drink, and none to make the proper ablutions with. 

" So we went to him and he gave us welcome for a time, and good 
came to him from our friendship, for we killed many elephants, and always 
sent him the ground tusk.^ But at last a talk arose that we Avere too 
strong, and Kankuni's mind began to fear that we might at last come 
to rule in his land, for our chief Kasuza's father was a wise man, and 
Kankuni resolved to cut at our strength. So when the first fruit 
offerings, which are made when the corn is ripe, came round, he called 
our old people together to do them honour and make a big feast, and 
they all went, and he gave them much cloth and beer, so that their hearts, 
which at first shrank from him, turned, and they all praised him ; but 
when night of the second day of the feast was come, he mustered all 
his own following, and confusing our old people by mixing hemp in 
their beer, he gave them all to the spears of his people. Young and 
old, women and children, all suffered ; only I, having been warned by 
Kasuza's mother, fled, taking with me Kasuza and his brothers and 
mother. That was a great killing, and the shame of it still rests on 
Kankuni's son Chinsinga. Right northwards I fled with the mother 
and the sons till I rested at Chuwali, where T found shelter, for the 
people of Chuwali did not eat from Kankuni's hand because of trouble 
about a ground tusk, and they lived in too strong a place for Kankuni 
to come at them. 

" Then I being a hunter, left there the mother and her sons, and 
went to hunt elephants. Much I hunted, and many elephants I killed, 
but at last I was caught by a party of Angoni ; see the marks on my 
body of the wounds they gave me ; and for years they held me a slave, 
however, treating me well, as I was known for a big hunter. So I lived 
and was in peace with Chikusi their chief, who gave me wives. But 

1 When au elephant is killed the tusk next the ground when the elephant lies dead is the 
right of the chief on whose land it was killed. 


with one chief I was not friends, for he desired ' ka nyanda nyangu,' ^ 
whom I had lately acquired. And he being powerful, one day when 
I was away hunting he took my wife, and Chikusi would not give 
me redress. So I brooded over this till news reached me that there was 
a talk of people living in our old land, and I thought of Kasuza and his 
mother whom I had left at Chuwali, whom I discovered, from fear of 
Kankuni, had left Chuwali and gone back to the old place. When our 
people heard of this, gradually one by one they turned to her, and soon 
villages sprang up on the mountain of Ntapassa, the people preferring to 
live in war rather than eat the poison of their hosts. So I resolved, too, 
that I would also go home. But before I left Angoniland, I waited for 
my revenge upon the man who had stolen my wife ; and one day, he being 
called to Chikusi's village, I gathered my people, for I had a following, 
and burning the village of my enemy, and taking all his cattle and pots 
and women I fled south to Ntapassa. That was a big blaze which I 
made, and when my enemy came back and found the fire in his thatch 
and all his women gone, he followed me, and we fought on the road, 
but my people having knowledge of guns beat off the Angoni, whose 
weapons are the spear ; and whereas in olden times an arroAV could not 
pierce a shield, a bullet now goes clean through it and hits the man 
behind. So I came to Ntapassa and found Kasuza and his mother, but 
even then there was no peace, for many small headmen arose each want- 
ing power, and one climbed into that hill and said, ' I am a chief — 
a chief of what, of rock rabbits — and another into that hill, and all 
quarrelled about gardens and ground tusks, as if the Angoni were not at 
our doors. And now you see how we are, with fire all round us (Fire is a 
polite term for war). In the north are the Angoni, but with them since 
the fight at Nyamba-Chikopa, where we beat them and gathered a heap 
of shields, so high, we have had very little trouble. In the south are the 
Portuguese, who want us to eat Chinsinga's grain, he whose father killed 
us like rats. In the south-east to Mikolongo are the Makololo, who want 
our country ; and in the west the Achipeta, who use poison on their arrows 
and who know no decency. And now our only hope is that the white 
man will give us peace, and then our gardens will stretch to Nsangnu 
again, for we bear many children, at present food for spears." 

Many other stories the old man told me of the j^ast glory of the tribe, 
and it was easy to see from their customs and ceremonies that they had 
once been an important people. Many degradations had, however, from 
necessity of their changed mode of life, crept into their ceremonies, such 
as the use of clay instead of water for certain ablutions, due to a scarcity 
of water in the caves where they lived, and immoral relations due to a 
scarcity of womankind ; the structure of their dwellings, and their 
mode of life, also deteriorated by their confinement to the hills. When 
not at war with their neighbours they were always fighting amongst 
themselves, and killings were of daily occurrence. Poison was freely 

1 A domestic term for a wife, only used in Azimbaland, literally "my little piece of bark 
cloth," derived from the phrase applied to a wife, "the little piece of bark cloth that keeps 
my back warm," from the fact that the man lies next the fire in the hut, his wife sleeping 
at his back between him and the wall. 


used to get rid of an enemj-, and slaves were harshly treated and given 
no benefit from the slave laws that usually govern their existence. 
During my stay with this peoi^le I gained their confidence to a large 
extent and managed to put a stop to the Angoni raids which harassed 
them, so that before I left them they had to a certain extent left the 
hills and begun to cultivate the plains again. They also evinced more 
cohesion among themselves, and many matters over which they used 
formerly to fight were referred to a council of chiefs for settlement. I 
have, however, though the history of the tribe and a description of their 
customs would fill no small volume, already devoted too much space to this 
subject, and I will now turn to the geographical features of the country 
and the errors which I have noticed in the current maps of that district. 

In a map by Mr. Daniel Eankin, made in 1892, his route is marked 
as passing through part of the country I refer to, but as none of the 
chief mountains or rivers are marked, and some places now definitely 
fixed are erroneously located by him, I am inclined to think that he 
passed south of Azimbaland, and that his route was not so far north as 
he has placed it on his map. He evidently did not cross the Makura- 
madzi, and only followed the Mwanza up a little above Mikolongo. 

To turn first of all to the trade routes and means of intercommunica- 
tion in and surrounding that district : 

On the east there is the Shir6 river, impassable at that portion on 
account of the Murchison cataracts, and thus the route to the north from 
Chinde and the sea lies via Blantyre to Matope on the Upper Shire. The 
Shir6 river makes a wide circle between Matope and Katunga, the land- 
ing place for Blantyre and the north, the greater portion of which circle 
is broken by rapids. This route via Blantyre is the only route to the 
north on the east side. 

From Matope and Mpimbi higher up the Upper Shire there are 
several well-defined paths leading to Northern and Central Augoniland, 
and the southernmost path of all, the one leading from Matope to 
Chinkombe's in Central Angoniland may be taken as the northernmost 
boundary of Azimbaland. 

On the south a well defined track from Katunga on the Lower Shir6 
to M'chena, marked Muchena on Kankin's map — M'chena means " white " 
or " whiteness " ; Muchena would mean "in whiteness" — via Mikolongo 
on the Mwanza, forms a rough boundary between the Azimba and their 
southern neighbours, though the villages of the tribe are many miles 
north of this. 

On the west a fairly well beaten path leads from Tete to Makanga, 
]\rch(''na, and Central and Northern Angoniland, keeping, however, 
west of the Revubwi river and avoiding the boundaries of Azimbaland, 
and after leaving M'chena passing through Achipetaland. Still further 
west there are two more routes, both starting north from the Karoabassa 
rapids on the Zambezi, the one crossing the Kapochi, Luia, Loangwa and 
Chiritsi rivers, and leading to northern Angoniland and the lake, and 
the others, following the Kapochi to Undi, and from thence proceeding 
north to the Loangwa river. It is this last route which is followed by 
the Arab trading caravans coming down to Tete and the coast from 



irxglish Miles 


Bangvveolo and Tanganyika. Between this route and the Kevubwi 
river, which is the boundary of the Azimba, the country is hilly, covered 
with a low "Masuko " scrub and badly watered. There are few hills of 
any size until Chuwali on the banks of the Eevubwi is reached, and the 
country is cut up by numerous dry ravines and barren gorges. The 
few hills and prominences which are scattered over the face of the land 
are inhabited by the Achipeta, who live in a state of constant warfare 
and whose hostile attitude to strangers causes them to be avoided. I 
had some dealings with them, not always of a friendly nature, and 
found their customs repulsive and their standard of life and morals very- 

It will thus be seen that Azimbaland is comparatively isolated from 
the surrounding country, none of the big trade routes passing through 
it. The only route traceable, which at one time traversed the country, 
and which is now hardly distinguishable, is that leading from Tete to 
Central Angoniland. This route, evidently at one time of importance, 
runs from Tete to Mount Salumbidwa, and skirting the western slopes of 
that mountain heads north until the Nkombedzi river is reached, then 
follows the Nkombedzi north to almost its source near Mount Nsanganu, 
to a slope which Mr. Rankin has marked as the Bondeka mountains, but 
before reaching this point the path turns oflf and cuts over to the Dwembi 
river, a tributary of the Revubwi, which it crosses and enters Central 
Angoniland. This route, now disused, was made by the Angoni in 
driving their cattle to Tete for sale, and must have been followed and 
regularly traversed in the early days of the Angoni-Zulu invasion, but 
since their power weakened has been neglected through fear of the 
Azimba, who used to attack and cut up the caravans. 

Inter-communication between the villages of this district is infrequent, 
intercourse being held between them by means of elephant and game 
paths. There is no path, connected with any of the aforementioned 
trade-routes, leading to the country, and the only way of reaching it is 
to steer a course through the bush. To approach the country from the 
Shire the best way is to leave the river at the Murchison Falls and 
follow the Makurumadzi river until it turns northwards, and from this 
point it is a distance of not more than ten miles to the Mwanza river, 
which is found running parallel to the Makurumadzi. The country 
traversed is very broken, the soil being a reddish brown, interspersed 
with quartz veins and quantities of schist. A gradual rise over 
a series of low ridges takes place after leaving the Shir6 river until the 
highest point between the Marurungwi mountain and the Shir<§ is reached, 
which is the dividing ridge between the Mwanza and Makurumadzi rivers. 
The whole of this country is covered with a low bushy scrub, mingled 
with huge boabab trees, and is very sterile, only the banks of the rivers 
being at all well wooded or possessing any luxuriant vegetation. From 
the dividing ridge between the two rivers country of the same nature can 
be seen stretching away north and south, the formation running in 
ridges parallel with the course of the river, i.e., north and south. To 
the west the peak of jMount Zobwi begins to be visible, and the shoulder 
of a long low mountain a little to the south of it named Zangi, the 


eastern slope of which is washed by the Mwanza river, which continues 
its course right northwards, and does not rise at Mount Zangi as mapped 
by Mr. Eankin. Leaving the banks of the Mwanza river the country 
rises more sharply, and the low scrub gives place to forests of well-grown 
" Masuko " with luxuriant foliage, which tree provides the bark cloth 
universally worn throughout this district. 

The gradual upward ascent ends abruptly in a broad well-wooded 
plateau twenty miles in breadth, which is mapped under the name of 
the Marurungwi range, at the portion I refer to, and further north as the 
Kirke mountains. But it is in reality two distinct ranges divided by 
the plateau. Mount Zangi, Mount Zobwi, and Mount Nyamba-chikopa 
are the only hills of any prominence on the eastern side — the side 
nearest the Shir6. Neither are they continuous, being isolated and 
separated from each other by broad plains and deep gorges. 

None of the three mountains gives birth to any stream of importance, 
though several small burns find their source on their slopes, and all run 
to join the Mwanza river. 

On the other side of the plateau the character of the range is very 
different, being much more rugged and precipitous, but even here there 
are only two mountains of any prominence. The first of these is Mount 
Ntapassa, and the second Mount Madzudzu, which both rise to a great 
height above the plain, and are scarped and terraced for hundreds of 
feet. Mount Madzudzu, which is the stronghold of Mombusa, lies a little 
to the south and rear of Ntapassa, Kasuza's seat, which faces the 

Further west the country descends to the Revubwi river in a series of 
well-defined rolling shoulders and dales, much more prominent than the 
approach on the eastern side of the plateau, and to the north and south 
merges into a compact mass of low rounded hills, well-wooded, which 
gradually descend to join, in the north, the open plains of Angoniland, 
and in the south the barren country stretching to the Zambezi. 

The whole distance between the Mwanza and the Revubwi rivers is 
about fifty miles, the plateau being about twenty miles in breadth, and 
the two confining ranges and the ascents to them accounting for the 
remaining thirty miles. 

Between the two ranges, but nearer the western than the eastern 
one, runs the river Nkombedzi, a tributary of the Revubwi river, and 
this is the only stream of importance which traverses the plateau. The 
river Minjova, finding its source on the southern slopes of Mount 
Zangi far south of Mount Zobwi, and the Lisamodzi river which rises 
at Nyamba-chikopa and joins the Nkombedzi, are at this point dry 
except during the rains. The Nkombedzi and the Minjova being 
tributaries of the Zambezi, it will be seen that the eastern range 
confining the plateau is the true division between the watersheds of the 
Shir6 and Zambezi, all the streams rising in the western range on the 
slopes of Makzudzu and Mount Ntapassa running to swell the waters 
of the Zambezi either through the medium of the Nkombedzi or the 
Revubwi. Mount Ntapassa gives birth to several strong burns, all of 
which go to join the Nkombedzi, on the other hand those streams rising 


on the slopes of Madzudzu mountain all seek the Revubwi river. It 
will be seen from the foregoing description that this plateau running 
north and south is confined by two ranges, the one of which is bounded 
by a tributary of the Shire, and the other by a tributary of the Zambezi, 
and the plateau itself is traversed by the Nkombedzi, a sub-tributary of 
the Zambezi, and that north and south both ranges flatten out to merge 
into the rolling plains from which they rise. The plateau is thickly wooded 
with Masuko, but in the vicinity of Mount Zobwi and Mount Ntapassa 
is badly watered, and it is not till its more northern portion is reached 
that the many small burns, which intersect it and run to join the 
Dsvembi river, are crossed. 

Seen from the plateau Mount Ntapassa has a very striking appearance, 
the slopes of the foot-hills rising gradually to the foot of the first preci- 
pitous upward leap, and then follows leap on leap of black slimy rock till 
the ragged edge of the summit stands out against the skyline. The 
mountain in length is about five miles from end to end, and has a basal 
breadth of nearly three miles. Behind it, a little to the south, Madzudzu 
mountain raises a round capped head, as distinct from the flat irregular- 
shaped summit of Xtapassa, and to the north the low hills pile them- 
selves one on to the other till they fade into the distance. These foot- 
hills are much intersected by small burns which feed the Revubwi river 
on the one side and the Nkombedzi on the other, though the greater 
number flow into the former river. 

The descent from Mount Ntapassa to the foot-hills about the 
Revubwi is very sudden, the ravines between the low long parallel ridge& 
being precipitous in nature ; and thus the journey from Ntapassa to the 
Revubwi is a tiresome one, many steep ascents and descents having to 
be accomplished, as the dividing ridges run north and south. 

But to give a detailed description of this district it will be better if I 
begin at where I consider the mountainous region commences, a little 
north of Mikolongo, and work north to its termination at Nsanganu,. 
describing as I go along the chief characters of the country and the 
points on which I differ from the originators of the existing map. 

But first it must be understood that from Mikolongo in the south a 
gradual rise of the whole plateau takes place till an elevation of GOO 3 
feet is attained at the northern termination at Mount Nsanganu, 
whence the country again falls to the plain of Angoniland ; also it 
must be understood that this district is not of a continuously moun- 
tainous character throughout its extent, but that the upward ascent is 
very gradual, almost imperceptible, and is composed of low ridges and 
gentle slopes amid which there are only a very few hills of any promi- 
nence, and they, from the unprominent nature of the surrounding country, 
seem to rise abruptly from the ascending plateau. 

Mount Salumbidwa is really the commencement of the range, and is 
situated as mapped a little to the north and west of Mikolongo on the 
Mwanza. Here the Minjova, a river which joins the Zambezi at the 
Lupata gorge, finds its source, and two small tributaries of the Minjova 
also rise here, but one, the largest of all, circles round the western slope 
of Salumbidwa and runs north to Mount Zan^i. But I am of the 


opinion, as I have already stated, that this tributary, marked Nkombedzi- 
wa-chuma, is really the true stream of the Minjova. Further west runs 
the Nkombedzi, and on the east further north a few isolated hills rise 
from the ascending country commencing the broken chain of the water- 
shed. Several small streams, dry except in the rains, find their source 
in these hills and traverse the plateau to join the Nkombedzi. Further 
east beyond these hills, in the broken country lying between them and 
the Shire, the Ngona and the Mwanza, the former a tributary of the 
latter, run parallel to each other, and continue thus till the Ngona 
turns west to its source on the eastern slopes of the plateau at Mount 
Zangi, mapped as Mount Tambani, the Mwanza continuing its course due 
north and receiving several small burns from the eastern portion of the 
plateau. These burns are all of a perennial nature, and thus the Mwanza 
never fails in its supply of water. 

On the western side of the plateau the range leading to Madzudzu 
and Mount Ntapassa now commences to distinguish itself from the 
prevailing character of the country, but it is not until opposite to Mount 
Zangi that the western range attains any prominence, and here Mount 
Madzudzu is the first height of any importance, after which, further 
north and east, comes Mount Ntapassa. 

On the current map several fair sized streams are given as traversing 
this plain, running from the slopes of the eastern range to join the 
Nkombedzi, but none of them are of importance and most of them are 
dry in the summer months. 

Still proceeding north and following the course of the Nkombedzi 
river, mapped as the Nkondodzi river, the country assumes a more 
broken character, on the western side falling in a jumble of low wooded 
hills to the Eevubwi river, and on the eastern side still bounded by the 
Mwanza, to which the country falls steeply. The only hill in this 
latitude on the eastern side, of any importance, is Mount Nyamba- 

The plateau narrows here considerably, and at this point the 
Nkombedzi begins to flow from the north-west, considerably diminish- 
ing the distance between itself and the Mwanza river, a rugged ridge 
or backbone dividing the two rivers. At the same time further east 
the Makurumadzi is still pursuing its southern course, flowing 
parallel with the Mwanza, and divided from it by a similar backbone. 
Makurumadzi means "big water," and further west of the Nkombedzi 
the Dwembi is, behind a similar ridge, continuing the like southern course. 
It is at this portion that there is an error in the present map, the 
Mwanza being mapped as having its source in this dividing ridge, 
whereas, though one or two dry ravines join it from hereabouts, the true 
Mwanza still continues to flow from the northward and finds its source in 
the conglomeration of low hills and ridges out of which Mount Nsanganu 
rises. Here also amid these hills, on various portions of these slopes, 
rise the Makurumadzi river and the Lisungwi ; there being thus three 
important rivers, all tributaries of the Shir6, rising from the north-east, 
east and south-eastern slopes, and two important tributaries of the 
Zambezi rising from the north-west and southern slopes, these rivers 


being tlie Xkombedzi and the Dwembi, both of which flow directly 
into the Revubwi river, the former near M'chena, and the latter at 

Tliere is not ten miles distance between the source of any of these 
rivers. The Nkombedzi, the Lisungwi, and the Dwembi rise all 
within five miles of each other, and the Makurumadzi and Mwanza a 
little further south ; and though different names can be given to the 
sources, Nsanganu Mount is really the head of their watershed. 

This is practically the termination of the plateau, and though 
beyond this point the elevation is still above that of the country lying 
to east and west, the country is open and unconfined by any definite 
chain of hills, and the descent to the Revubwi, which continues its course 
past Nsanganu and rises far to the north, is very gradual. 

The features of all these streams are very much the same ; none of 
them have high banks, and the valleys of the Mwanza, Xgona, and 
Makurumadzi are very narrow, with hardly any breadth of bottom. 
The banks of the Nkombedzi are much flatter and being unconfined 
in a valley its current inundates a certain amount of land on either 
bank when the river is in flood. The vegetation on the banks of all 
these streams is similar; on the Mwanza and the Xkombedzi the 
raphia palm grows in great profusion. Bamboo of an)" size is 
however scarce, the bamboo thickets which clothe the mountain slopes 
being of a stunted nature. 

Of all these rivers the Dwembi is the most interesting, as at part of 
its course it passes through a series of caves. I cannot be quite certain 
whether it is the Dwembi itself or a tributary which runs underground, 
as I have no means of refreshing my memory. 

These caves are of a fair size and are all inhabited, stores of grain 
being kept there, together with sheep and goats. There are two under- 
ground channels, an upper one through which the river seems to have 
flowed at one time, and a lower one into which it now seems to have 

The country traversed by the Dwembi is very fertile, far more so 
than any other I have travelled through, the banks of the river being 
very flat and the bottoms of the valleys being broad and open. The 
soil is rich^ and maize, rice, cotton and tobacco flourish luxuriantly. 
The natural vegetation is also very profuse, bamboos growing to an 
enormous girth and forming large thickets low down on the bases of 
the hills. 

The altitude of the Dwembi valley is much beneath the plateau, and 
nearly on the same level as the Kevubwi, of which it is a tributary, and 
which runs parallel to it a little further west for a great part of its 
course. There is a certain amount of rubber on the hills in this locality, 
and at Chuwali, where the Dwembi joins the Revubwi there is a con- 
siderable forest of it, the Achipeta inhabiting the mountain of Chuwali 
doing a fair commerce in rubber and monkey skins. These monkeys 
are of great beauty, and their skins are much prized by the Angoni for 
making their war costumes. Leopards also abound hereabouts, and 
the natives trap great numbers of them in log falls. 


Before I close I would like to refer once more to the characteristics of 
the Azimba and Achipeta. The former are extremely dark, their skins 
being thin and of a soft, easily manipulated texture. The majority of 
the men and \yomen are tall and handsome, thin-lipped and aquiline in 
feature. They are very long-limbed, active and graceful in their move- 
ments, long trunked and slender fingered and toed, the second and 
third toes being unusually long and not, as I have observed (whether it 
may be an anthropological fact or not I am unaware), like the hill and 
cave dwellers of Achipetaland, whose big toes are abnormally spatu- 
lated, and whose other toes and fingers are thick and stumpy. The 
Achipeta are much thicker-skinned, and their colour is not such a deep 
black, being more a dark, dirty brown. The hair of the Achipeta also is 
laot so dark as that of the Azimba, being browner in colour, whereas the 
hair of the Azimba is jet black. 

The males of the Azimba tribe wear their hair long and unplaited, 
whereas the Achipeta plait their hair and smear it with red clay and 
white flour. 

Some years ago I described the initiation ceremony for girls in a 
paper I contributed to the German Anthropological Society, I being the 
first European who ever witnessed this ceremony, which was held under 
my protection in the open plains for the first time for many years ; 
Angoni raids formerly having deterred the people from venturing from 
the safety of the hills. The Achipeta ceremony is a very different one, 
and far more degraded, but I cannot enter into such subjects in the 
columns of a geographical magazine ; and it must suffice that the 
customs of the two people are very different, the Achipeta dances and 
initiations being much more complicated, and to Europeans indecorous, 
though to the anthropologist they afford much new information and have 
many points of interest. 

Of the two tribes, the Achipeta are the more turbulent and treacherous, 
though not so courageous or warlike as the Azimba. The former are 
quick to attack unsuspecting strangers, while the latter are hospitable 
and frank. Of this latter fact I had experience during my travels in 
Achipetaland, when one evening, having taken up my quarters in the 
vicinity of one of the Achipeta rock dwellings, I was alarmed by my 
headman coming to me and telling me that the inhabitants were disposed 
to attack us, one of their number (though I had been on friendly terms 
with them for some days) having, after exciting himself with a decoction 
of hemp, climbed on to a rock with a sheaf of poisoned arrows and 
commenced to threaten my camp. When I approached the scene I 
found the man at the distance of about one hundred yards standing on 
a rock with his bow bent and the arrow pointed at us. He was shouting 
at the top of his voice in a peculiar sing-song tone. " ISTa-penya-ulendo — 
na-penya-ulendo " — "I see strangers," though his cry could not be called 
parliamentary in any sense, " Lassa-ni-ulembi" — "Lassa-ni-ulembi " 
— " Wound them with poison, wound them with poison." I recognised 
that hemp was the cause of his conduct, and not wishing to have to 
shoot him, as I wanted no trouble with the villagers, I called up his 
chief, who said he was powerless to control him, and that the best thing 


we could do would be to bolt. But this would have been only to incite 
him to actually attack us, and in the end I decided to wait till dark and 
then try and capture him. This we effected, getting round him under 
cover of dusk ; though it was not a pleasant wait, literally under fire the 
whole time ; of course had he actually shot an ai-row at us I would have 
had to shoot him to save my men, who were so alarmed that I discovered 
afterwards that they had all gone quietly and made an offering to their 
guardian spirit, the offering taking the form of pulling leaves off a tree 
and laying them in a heap, each man contributing : the action being 
accompanied by the usual hand clapping and supplications. 

This will show how untrustworthy the character of the Achipeta is ; 
in comparison to the Azimba, who once formed a fair sized force and 
came over 150 miles to my aid when they heard that I was in a tight 
corner, far over in North Achipetaland. 

Another difference between the two peoj^le is their mode of dwelling, 
the Achipeta fortifying all their villages with stockades or mud walls, no 
matter even if they are living in the recesses of the hills, and the 
Azimba having no fortified place throughout the whole extent of their 

In concluding this article I wish to state that in trying to describe 
the district I have dealt with, while correcting what seem to me to be 
errors in the current maps, I have rather tried to give a picture that can 
be understood by the average person than dealt minutely with every 
feature of mountain and river, and that my observations are not those 
of the surveyor, but simply those of an ordinary traveller whose 
knowledge of that district is thorough, having lived and hunted in it, 
and mapped it in a rough and ready way without such aids as theodolites 
and plane tables. 

By J. Penman Browne, M.E. 

{mth Illustration.-^.) 

As the earlier stages of our journey were over comparatively well-known 
ground, it may be sufficient to begin the present account at Mahagi, 
which lies near the shore of Lake Albert Xyanza and almost at the foot 
of the Luru mountains. We stayed two days here, and on the third 
morning about 5 A.M. set out north-west to cross the Luru hills, in order 
to continue our journey to the Ituri forest. We were well up the hills 
when the sun rose, and witnessed a magnificent sunrise. 

After traversing the Luru hills we came to a most beautiful country. 
From the top of the hills right on to the Ituri forest there are broad 
rolling plains and fertile valleys, having a plentiful supply of clear, cool 
water in the many streams that flow through the region, which is in my 

' The illustrations accompanying this paper are from photographs by Colonel Harrison. 


opinion very suitable for the white man's occupation, and would make 
an ideal stock-raising country. 

In addition, the climate is splendid, as can be gathered from the fact 
that this particular territory lies at an altitude ranging from 3000 feet 
to 6000 feet above sea-level. 

What surprised me very much on the first two days' march from 
Mahagi was the absence of any living thing. No mammals, except a 
few domesticated ones in the two large villages we came to, were seen, 
and no birds, except a species of black-and-white crow seen near the 
villages also. Walking along for hours without seeing an antelope 
bound across our path, without seeing a bird flying overhead, began to 
get monotonous, and we were very glad to see at last the huts and 
plantations of a chief, Moka by name. Not until the end of our second 
day's march did we find ourselves out of this " Silent Land," and then, 
strange to say, we found a district thickly populated, and stranger still, 
a land teeming with all manner of birds and game. Here the natives 
turned out in force to welcome us. 

We obtained a plentiful supply of sweet potatoes, manioc, bananas, 
tomatoes, and European potatoes, and large bowls of milk, while many 
dozens of eggs were off'ered us freely, as also were sheep, goats, and 

On this route — the Mahagi-Ituri forest route, which at the mountains 
immediately to the rear of the first-mentioned place attains an altitude 
of 3500 feet, and gradually rises to 6000 in less than 100 miles — one 
naturally finds many changes in the vegetation with the change of 
altitude. For instance, at an altitude of 3000 feet to 4000 feet one finds 
the people cultivating the ground extensively and depending much upon 
tropical grain as the chief means of subsistence. Further on, and at a 
higher altitude, bananas and sweet potatoes form the staple food. At 
this point, European vegetables thrive remarkably w^ell, and it has been 
pointed out that European grain might equally do well, and so increase 
the suitability of the district for the European. 

The natives in these parts are peaceable and law-abiding, and seem 
to be happy and contented under the Belgian rule. It was these same 
people who tried to hinder Stanley on his journey to relieve Emin Pasha 
at Dufile, but now, instead of trying to kill the white man, they welcome 
him and do all in their power to assist him. This was, at least, our 
experience of them. 

Five days' march (ninehours per day) from Mahagi brought ustolrumu. 
From the latter place (which is to be the headquarters of the Haut Ituri 
administi'ation) one can hear the dull roar of the river Ituri as it dashes 
and tumbles over the rocks on its rush to join the mighty Zaire, or Congo 
River. We set off again after a stay of one day here, and, after a march 
of five hours, saw the dark forest looming out in the distance. One hour 
more brought us there, and we saw for the first time a band of that little 
nomad people, the wandering pigmies of the great Ituri forest. They 
were singing and dancing in front of the resthouse, and continued doing 
this for about an hour after our arrival, apparently for our benefit. 
They were very inquisitive, and did not seem to be quite sure of us, 



regarding us with a certain amount of suspicion. However, after giving 
them a few presents, consisting of cloth and salt and beads, we took a 
few photos of them and exacted a promise from them that they would 
return and see us the following morning. Next morning came, but no 
pigmies. They had all fled into the forest depths, evidently thinking 
we had some sinister motive in wishing them to return. 

My friend. Colonel Harrison, then went off in search of elephants, 
there being many in the forest here, for we could see traces "where they 
had been during the night, and they could be heard in the distance 
trumpeting loudly. Taking my rifle and shot gun, I got into the old 

Fig. 1.— a Group of Pigmies and Balesse. 

canoe, and with two men to paddle I went down the river, intending 
to look for rubber-bearing vines, and also to try and get a shot at the 
many bright-coloured birds which were seen flitting about in the trees 
near the river. I saw a few of the beautiful black-and-white Colobus 
monkeys as they swung from tree to tree, but could not get a shot at 
any of them. 

The journey I made down the river Ituri in the " pirogue " was peace- 
ful and pleasant in the extreme. Here, running through a vast forest 
of giant trees and shrubs, consisting of gigantic false cotton-trees belong- 
ing to the order Sterculiaceae and other species of the Rosaceae, Euphor- 
biaceae and Artocarpeae orders, the river wound and turned. Now and 
then the sun's rays fell upon the pleasant waters causing them to glimmer 
like silver sheen. Here and there, all down the river, were scattered 


innumerable small islands, on which grew a few tall trees, and on the trees 
could be seen many grey parrots ; also sharp-eyed kingfishers, who sat on 
branches overhanging the river, looking, no doubt, for their breakfast in 
the rippling waters of the Ituri. Green and yellow paroquets, sun-birds, 
weaver-birds, and many others could also be seen flitting about among 
the trees and undergrowth. 

The Ituri forest in certain parts contains many valuable woods, 
such as African mahogany, teak, greenheart, camwood, copalwood, 
ebony, and ironwood, and I also found there many species of Lan- 
dolphias (rubber vines), while by the rivers, where the forest sends out its 
prolongations, I have come across much of both kinds of rubber, good 
and bad, the latter consisting of a bastard species {Funtumia latifoli), 
the latex of which cannot be got to coagulate properly. 

Orchids are very numerous, a red-and-white variety being the most 
common. Ferns are plentifully distributed throughout. 

The Belgians have already surveyed a way through this forest in con- 
nection with their Chemin de Fer des Grands Lacs scheme, but in order 
to exploit this region one need not wait till this railway is constructed, 
for Lake Albert Nyanza is in close proximity to a part of the Ituri 
forest. Timber and produce generally could be shipped across the lake 
to Uganda, or taken down the Nile as far as Nimule. Just below this 
latter place, the Tola rapids of the Nile occur, which boats cannot navigate, 
so it is obvious that other means than transport by w\ay of the river 
must be found. A very advisable plan would be for the Uganda 
government to consider the feasibility of continuing the Uganda rail- 
way from its present terminus (Port Florence) to Gondokoro, the point 
where the Khartum steamers call every month. Were the Uganda 
railway constructed to Gondokoro, the Sudan authorities might then 
consider the advisability of linking it up with the Khartum one. In 
the near future the trade of Central Africa must assume enormous pro- 
portions, and personally, I do not think that the Nile, as a means of 
transport, could cope with the increase of traflfic which is bound to be 
the outcome of the development of such vast dormant territories as the 
Bahr el Ghazal, Uganda, and Central Africa generally. The advantages 
that would be gained by such a railway would be many, for it is well 
known that the aforementioned territories are very rich and fertile, and 
offer immense possibilities to the enterprising pioneer. 

To the naturalist the Ituri forest should offer immense possibilities. 
It has not been thoroughly explored by white men yet, and extends 
over an area of some hundreds of square miles, and is only inhabited 
round the fringe by rubber " hunters," and the Wambutti or Mambutti 
race of pigmies. There that rare and beautiful animal, the okapi, first 
made known to science by Sir Harry Johnston, finds a home; and there 
it is free from molestation from big-game hunters, for it is next to 
impossible for a white man to hunt there, the forest growths being so 
dense. For this reason this rare animal will be safe from extermination 
for many years to come. Further north the white rhinoceros and 
beautiful eland are fast becoming extinct, by reason of the easiness of 
access to their haunts for indiscriminate sportsmen. We had not the 


luck to see any of these animals on this trip, and during the time we 
were in the forest we only saw the spoor of a solitary okapi. 

The Pigmies gave us some information regarding the okapi. I 
might mention, in passing, that the word okapi is from the Pigmy 
language, and the animal is known to them by this name. Colonel 
Harrison showed them a large coloured drawing of the animal, and 
many and loud were the exclamations on their beholding it. One 
man drew an imaginary bow to shoot it, and cries of " Okapi ! Okapi ! " 
were many. 

They told us that, contrary to popular supposition, if disturbed, 
the animal does not run far away. They also informed us that its 
habits are similar to those of a forest hog, for it is often found wallow- 
in » in a mud puddle. It feeds on young shoots and shrubs, also 
succulent roots, which it digs up with its forefeet. 

But to return to our journey — going back to the resthouse I found 
Colonel Harrison awaiting me, he having, like myself, returned without 
getting anything, so we decided to strike camp and make for Mayaribu. 
This place we reached about 4.30 in the afternoon. Going down the 
river we spied three small red buffaloes, but before the canoe could be 
stopped they had made off into the depths of the forest, where we were 
unable to follow them. 

From Mayaribu we could hear the song and jest of the rubber- 
gatherers as they gathered the milky latex that was later to be con- 
verted into that commodity of commerce, rubber, over the smoke of 
their nut-fires. 

From Mayaribu we proceeded to Kavalli, where we decided to stay 
a week or two, in order to get better acquainted with our little Pigmy 
friends, and, if possible, to try and get an okapi. 

After having gained the confidence of the Pigmies, we went hunting 
one day with them. Starting out one morning as soon as daylight set in, 
we accompanied a band numbering somewhere about one hundred and fifty. 
They were all armed with the usual equipment for the chase, consisting 
of poisoned spears, bows and barbed arrows, and knives, which are 
about six inches long in the blade. They were also accompanied by a 
few mongrel-looking dogs about the size of a fox-terrier. Round the 
necks of these were hung iron rattles, which had a long slit on the 
underside. Into this slit a wisp of grass was stuffed to prevent them 
making a noise when not tracking game. As soon as any animal 
is raised the wisp of grass is immediately withdrawn, and away the 
dogs set in pursuit, the Pigmies following the sound of the rattle. 

The Pigmies poison their spears, but, curiously enough it is not the 
blade which is poisoned, but the part of the stick next the blade. It is 
notched at this part, and the poison is rubbed into the notches, and 
this means that it must be driven in over the blade before the poison 
can take effect. 

They have also a reed whistle upon which they perform a few 
" calls," which signifies various things. The hunting parties are usually 
divided up into two, one party driving and the other receiving the 
drive. We elected to stay with the latter party. After travelling for 



about two hours on the forest path which leads to Fort Beni, and 
crossing a stream, we divided our forces, with the object aforementioned. 
We sent on the driving party to enter the forest at a point further east, 
while we, with the remaining party, tried to follow the stream. We 
Avere not long started when we heard a peculiar " call " on the whistle. 
We stopped, and were informed by our leader (a Pigmy) that the interpre- 
tation of the "call" was that something had been raised. We were at 
once on the alert, and waited with bated breath in expectancy. We 
did not need to wait long when another " call " sounded, this time 
entirely different from the first. We had no need to be told this time 
Avhat it meant, for our leader rushed off to where the sound proceeded 

Fig. 2. — A Balesse Hut in the Ituri Forest. 

from, leaving us to follow as best we could, and when we reached the 
place we found not what we fondly expected (an okapi) but an "ingo- 
lubi," or forest-hog, lying in its last death-throes. 

Sending it off to camp we set off through the forest again, but we 
only succeeded in getting a small forest antelope. 

There are a great many small animals in this forest. This can be 
accounted for by the fact of the dense undergrowth ; no large or medium- 
sized animal could force a way through, while smaller animals can creep 
through it without much trouble. We went on until about two in the 
afternoon, when, led by our friends, the Pigmies, we made for camp, 
which was reached about five in the evening. I was so tired out that I 
lay in bed the next day until twelve o'clock, when my boy came and 
informed me that the sun was " Gati Gati," that is halfway, or, in 


other words, it was midday. By the time I rose and dressed, the 
Pigmies had come in, with another forest-hog, and then we had as much 
work as kept us busy until evening again. 

When evening came we got our friends, the Pigmies, gathered round 
us, and tried to glean some information about their habits and customs, 
etc. The following are a few facts which I noted down at the time. If 
they wish to have success in their hunting operations, they, previous to 
setting out, cut a number of small slits down the back of their wrists, 
and rub in a concoction made from the roots of a certain shrub, then 
they call on Allah or God, whom they designate "Loadi," also their 
departed father (if he be dead), to watch over them and to prevent them 
from going astray in the depths of the forest. If one loses his way and 
never returns, the Devil, or " Ouda " as they name His Satanic Majesty, 
is supposed to have flown oft' with him to some unknown j^art. If a 
female child is born, the father gathers a few plantain leaves and brings 
them home, then he and the mother start to lash the poor infant with 
them. They do not want female children. On the other hand, should 
a male child be born, then there are great preparations made to celebrate 
this little one's advent into the world. A great feast is given at which 
unlimited banana beer (called " Choki ") is consumed. 

Polygamy is the recognised custom, it being usual for a man to have 
two or three wives, according to his means. Circumcision is practised 
also. Adultery is punishable by death. 

They live chiefly on meat, the proceeds of their hunting operations. 
In hunting they are very skilful and nimble, and thej- are expert 
bowmen. I have seen them kill an elephant by following it and severing 
the tendons of the hind legs, while at the same time one would dart 
forward and thrust a large spear into the region of its heart. 

Any surplus meat they may have is exchanged with their larger 
neighbours for grain, sweet potatoes, or bananas, but they are never 
seen by those with whom they made the exchange. At nightfall they 
bring the piece of meat and put it down in a prominent part of the 
village, and the following night they return to find in its place grain or 

Another of their customs is this : if a father dies his sons construct 
a very small hut over his grave; and outside the hut that was once the 
home of the deceased, they make a small conical structure, into which 
they place a few pieces of meat and some bananas occasionall}', thinking 
that one day he will return from the grave, and these articles of food 
are placed in readiness for him, in case he should be hungry. 

The men wear a cloth which they make from the bark of a tree, and 
this cloth is usually dyed blue or red, the only two dyes that are made 
by them. The women wear a bunch of leaves. 

They have many curious dances. They go through a regular system 
of hunting operations in the course of the dance, while the women trot 
round in a circle, decorated with long racemes of gaudy flowers hanging 
from their elbows, and parrots' feathers stuck through their hair. 
Another dance, the " sacred dance," is one which is a favourite with 
them. The chief dances round in a zigzag circle, followed by all the 



others ; suddenly he turns round and tries to overthrow the next one 
with his right leg. The first time he fails, or elects to fail ; but on 
trying again he this time overthrows his man : this is said by some 
people to represent the great battle of Horus and Sut. 

But to return to the characteristics of the region, we have in the 
Upper Ituri a vast fertile district comprising an area of many square 
miles, a part of which is clothed by primaeval forest which, as I have else- 
where mentioned, contains many valuable commercial commodities. The 

Fig. 3.— a Group of Shilluks, encountered near the Sohat, on the way to Kliartum. 

climate is splendid, and labour is plentiful and cheap. Many of the 
hillsides are covered with bracken, a species of mountain shield fern 
grows freely, while in the ravines and valleys I found the common 
bramble or blackberry fruiting freely. Further instances of the nature 
of the climate are to be found in the fact that strawberries from Europe 
were introduced here, and in the officers' gardens at Irumu they did 
wonderfully well, and fruited without having any special attention or 
covering from the sun. At this same place roses were blooming 
profusely at the time of our visit, Xotwithstanding the fact that the 
sun is very powerful, and no rain falls for a few months, the sun has not 


the injurious effect upon vegetation which one might suppose, for during 
the course of the night there falls a heavy dew which is very beneficial 
to vegetation. 

In Chief Buna's domains, three days from Mahagi, there are great 
ravines, up which grow many Dracaenas, giant lobelias, and numerous 
plantains, also tree ferns. Another tree found growing here, although 
not in large numbers, is a species of Symphonia. This tree seems to be 
distributed over nearly the whole of Central Africa, from the West 
Coast to the East and in Uganda. 

At the present moment the known natural resources of the Ituri are 
rubber and valuable woods in the forest regions, and native grain, 
bananas, etc., while gold is, at present, the only valuable mineral of any 
importance discovered. 

In order to develop the wealth (vegetable and mineral) of the Ituri, 
it is obvious that some up-to-date method of transport must be employed. 
Railways would have to be constructed, for at present there are none. 
To develop every source of this territory's wealth a railway must be 
made, for Avhether it be rubber cultivation, cotton cultivation, grain 
growing, or gold mining which first attests the wealth-producing 
capacity of this territory, some means of transport must be considered. 
As I have mentioned before, the Belgians have surveyed a route for a rail- 
way through this district, in connection with the one which they are at 
present busily constructing towards the Great Lakes from Stanleyville, 
and which it is proposed to continue right on to Mahagi on Lake Albert 
iSTyanza, thence to Rejaf on the White Nile. But as yet that railway 
has not nearly reached Lake Tanganyika, and when one considers that a 
railway from this last-mentioned lake to Lake Albert Nyanza has to be 
constructed through what is almost the most inaccessible part of Central 
Africa, it is obvious that it will be a long time yet before the natives of 
these parts are startled by the whistle of the "masua," as they name 
an engine. And if the wealth of the Ituri has to wait until this 
raihvay is made, it will not be developed for many years to come. On 
the other hand, seeing that it is the intention of the Congo authorities 
to construct their Great Lakes railway to Mahagi and Kejaf, why not 
begin to do this from both ends, i.e. from Stanleyville at one end and 
Rejaf at the other'? By this means they w^ould be able to finish their 
railway in very much less time, and as there are no formidable obstacles 
in the way of building a railway from Rejaf to the Ituri, it would reach 
that place in a very short time, and could be made to pay from the 
very start. 

Even although it was a matter of a few years' time yet before the 
advent of a railway in these parts of the Congo which I have already 
mentioned, it would be an excellent plan in the meantime to employ 
capable men, such as economic botanists, trained arboriculturists, and 
men well up in all branches of scientific agriculture, also capable mining 
engineers, etc., in order to teach the natives there some of the best 
methods of raising the kinds of produce most suited to that particular 
l>art, and to develop the mineral resources and wealth of this region 




Lectures in February. 

Ox February 1, Professor Sir William M. Ramsay, D.C.L., LL.D., 
Litt.P., D.D., of Aberdeen University, will deliver his lecture on " Roads 
and Railways on the Plateau of Asia Minor " in Glasgow, on February 20 
in Dundee, and on February 21 in Aberdeen. Mr. C. S. Seligmann, 
M.B., will address the Society on " Anthropogeographical Investigations 
in British New Guinea" (with cinematograph pictures) in Edinburgh 
on February 14, Glasgow on February 11, Dundee on February 12, and 
Aberdeen on February 13. Professor George Adam Smith, M.A., 
D.D., LL.D., will lecture on "The Historical Evolution of Jerusalem" 
in Edinburgh on February 21, and in Glasgow on February 22. 


Errata: — Geographical Photography. — In our last issue on 
p. 18, in the paragraph beginning " The late Dr. Schlichter," in the second 
line the word latitude has been inserted in error in place of longitude. 
On p. 16, Dr. A'addox should be Dr. Maddox. 


Expedition to Burmah. — The pearl oyster fisheries of the 
Mergui Archipelago, lying oif the province of Tenasserim, Lower 
Burmah, are to be the object of an investigation on behalf of the 
Indian Government, and for this purpose Mr. R. N. Rudmose Brown 
and Mr. J. J. Simpson left early last month for Rangoon. It is 
extremely probable that an examination of the ground may result 
in the discovery of new pearl banks, or at least the possibility of 
such banks being started. It is expected that the investigation, at 
least on its economic side, will be completed before the commencement 
of the south-west monsoon season in May.* 


Ruwenzori. — The Duke of the Abruzzi lectured on January 7 at 
Rome, and at London on January 12, on his recent expedition to 
Mount Ruwenzori, and there is thus for the first time available official 
information as to his results. It will be noted that the official figures 
as to the heights of the peaks differ considerably from those previously 
given. The following is quoted from the Times report of the lecture : — 

" Roughly described, the Ruwenzori range consists of six principal 
groups — divided by cols which average between 14,432 ft. and 
13,786 ft. in height — stretching from north-north-east to south- 
south-west with a slightly circular trend. These groups and cols in 
their order, starting from north to south, have been named: — Mount 


Gessi — col Roccati, Mount Emin — col Cavalli, Mount Speke — col Stuhl- 
mann, Mount Stanley — col Scott Elliott, Mount Baker — col Freshfield, 
and Mount Thompson. Mount Speke corresponds to the Duvvoni of 
Sir Harry Johnston, and Mount Baker to the Semper or Kiyanja. The 
separate peaks of these groups have also been named. The highest 
group is the Mount Stanley, where two adjacent peaks, named 
Margherita and Alexandra, reached respectively the heights of 16,815 
and 16,744 feet. They were among the first climbed by the Duke, 
who had reason to recognise at once their superior height to the rest 
of the range. It was on June 17 that he made the ascent of peak 
Alexandra, arriving at the summit at 6.30 in the morning. At that 
hour the whole range was covered by a level sea of white mist, out of 
which stood two islands alone, the snowy top of Alexandra, from which 
he looked, and that of Margherita. Five hours later, at 11.30 on the 
same morning, he was on the summit of Margherita and had ascended 
the two highest points of the range. 

" The snow was always in good condition, and the climbing, both on 
rock and ice, never presented any difficulty. The lowest point of glacier 
was at 13,677 ft. AH the glaciers show signs of receding; none were 
of the first order, all being, without exception, of the secondary order, 
without tributaries, recalling the glaciers of Scandinavian type. There 
was no niv4. The limit of perpetual snow was at about 14,600 feet; the 
area covered by it had a radius of some five miles from its centre. The 
temperature upon the highest summits varied betAveen a maximum of 42-8 
degrees Fahrenheit, and a minimum of 26'6 degrees. The chief difficulty 
experienced was the weather, which was hardly ever clear. In spite of 
its conditions, the Duke of the Abruzzi and his companions succeeded in 
all the objects of their expedition, making an exact survey of the range, 
climbing, determining the height of its several summits, fixing the 
watershed, and bringing back, besides their maps, an admirable series of 
photographs, the work of Signor Sella." 

From the above it appears that Mr. AVollaston (cf. xxii. p. 380) was 
correct in believing that no peak of Ruwenzori exceeds 17,000 feet in 


Earthquake in Jamaica. — A severe earthquake shock occurred 
in Jamaica on 14th January, and caused great destruction of life and 
property in the town of Kingston. As has frequently happened lately, 
the shock was followed by destructive fires, and has apparently caused 
the subsidence of parts of the harbour and the neighbouring coast. 


Meteorology in the Antarctic. — It will be remembered that 
several members of the staff of the recently closed Ben Xevis Observatory 
left more than a year ago to continue the meteorological and magnetic 
work initiated in March 1903 by Mr. W. S. Bruce, leader of the Scottish 
National Antarctic Expedition, at Scotia Bay, South Orkneys. News has 
been received from Buenos Ayres to the effect that the Antarctic research 


ship Urugucuj left that port on 11th December last for the South 
Orkneys with a party under the leadership of Mr. Angus Rankin, late 
superintendent of the Ben Nevis Observatory. Included in the party is 
Mr. Meldrum, a son of the late Dr. Meldrum, C.M.G., of Mauritius, who 
is well known for his meteorological work. 

The UriKjuaii takes plenty of provisions in case the party has to 
winter in these latitudes, as it is understood that the ice conditions this 
year in the south are exceptionally bad, the pack lying further north 
than previously recorded. 

On the return of the Uruguay to Ushuaia, the second party, consisting 
largely of members of the late Ben Nevis Observatory staff, under the 
leadership of Mr. Bee, was to leave for Wandel Island, at the southern 
extremity of Gerlache Strait, Charcot's winter quarters, where a new 
meteorological and magnetic station will be established. 

Before leaving Buenos Ayres, Messrs. Eankin and Bee were invested 
by the Argentine Ministry with the official insignia of office pertaining 
to the position of Political Officer for these places, so that by this 
time their formal annexation to the Argentine Eepublic has been 

The station at South Georgia is also being continued, while the 
installation of parties on one of the islands of the South Sandwich 
group, as well as on the west side of the Falklands, is contemplated 
in the immediate future. 

This comprehensive scheme of work cannot fail to very materially 
advance our knowledge of the meteorology and magnetism of the area 
lying to the south and west of Cape Horn, especially as the meteoro- 
logical service of the Argentine Republic is already in a high state of 
efficiency. This elaborate programme is largely due to the initiative 
and enterprise of Mr. Walter G. Davis, Director of the Argentine 
Meteorological Office, whose efforts have been cordially supported by 
the Ministry of that country. 

The Peary Arctic Expedition. — Some further details may be 
added to the short account which was all that space permitted in our 
December issue. 

The Roosevelt left Etah on August 16, 1905, and reached Cape 
Sheridan on September 15. The ice then enclosed and held the ship, 
and she was made fast there for some days. The ice jammed, damaging 
the rudder and propeller and unmercifully squeezing the vessel, which 
on the 16th was lifted till her propeller showed. The vessel was not 
floated again until the following summer, and this position perforce 
became headquarters. Supplies and equipments were landed on October 
12, and from the summit of Black Cape, Peary saw the sun for the last 
time. The winter proved the direct antithesis of that which the Alert 
experienced in the same region. The temperatures were comparatively 
high, and there were squalls every few days, sometimes continuing as 
furious gales for two or three days. During October there was a rapid 
succession of deaths among the dogs. It Avas traced to poisoning from 
cured whale-meat, several tons of which had accordingly to be thrown 


away. During the winter the dogs and the Esquimos lived in con- 
sequence upon the country, obtaining musk oxen, reindeer, hare, and 
salmon, and building snow-houses in the Lake Hazen Basin, where they 
were sent by Peary. 

On February 21, Peary started on a sledge trip in the direction of 
the Pole, several parties having preceded him by a couple of days. 
Three marches brought him to Cape Hecla, where the entire expedition 
assembled. The encampment comprised Bartlett, Wolf, Marvin, 
Henson, Clarke, Ryan, Peary, 21 Eskimos, and 120 dogs. The plan 
concerted was to proceed in one main and five or six division parties, 
which Peary hoped would be able to advance supplies and maintain 
communications with the selected base. Point Moss, lying 20 miles 
to the west of Cape Hecla, was determined upon as the point of 
departure from the land. Open leads and rough ice rendered progress 
slow, and a considerable portion of the trail had to be cut with 
pick-axes. The first glimpse of the sun was obtained on March 6. 
About 80 miles from the land the character of the going greatly 
improved, but leads were more frequent and wider. " At latitude 
84° 38'," says Commander Peary, " I came up with Bartlett, Henson, 
and Clarke, with their parties stalled by a broad lead extending east 
and west as far as it could be seen. After a delay of six days, we 
crossed on young ice, which bent beneath our weight. Bartlett and 
Clarke were sent back for supplies." 

Peary then established a coxlip-, in which instruments were placed for 
the supporting parties, and, preceded by Henson, then continued his 
journey, but three days later it began to blow heavily. The gale lasted 
six days, during which Peary and Henson were driven 70 miles 
eastward by the drifting of a great floe on which they had encamped. 
Two of the Eskimos were then sent back for news. They returned in 
seventy-four hours and reported that the ice was wide open to the south. 
Nothing had been seen of the supporting parties. In consequence it 
was resolved to make a dash for the Pole, and by forced marches, on 
April 21, 87° 6' was readied, as already mentioned. Here it was found 
necessary to turn, and great difficulties were then encountered. After 
harking back to latitude 81°, a big lead was encountered over which no 
crossing could be found. The party camped on a big floe, which drifted 
steadily eastward. Here the dogs were driven away and the sledges 
broken up to cook the dog-meat, which the party ate. On the fifth day 
the two Eskimos reported young ice a few miles distant, which the party 
eventually crossed on snow-shoes. After fearful difficulties the ] tarty 
dragged themselves on May 12 into the ice at the foot of the Greenland 
coast, at Cape Neuraayer. Here, two days later, a junction was eff'ected 
with Clarke's party, and seven musk-oxen were secured. 

The remainder of the march back to the Piooscvelt was accomplished 
without any extraordinary incident. Commander Peary made another 
trip, leaving records at various points, including Cape Columbia. On 
July 30 he returned to the Roosevelt, which next day steamed for Thank 
God Harbour. On August 25 the vessel was delayed by the ice in 
Lady Franklin Bay, where the case seemed so hopeless that the explorers 


prepared for a second year's sojourn in the frozen north ; but the Boosevelt 
managed to get free and the voyage was resumed. At Etah the ship 
was beached for four days for repairs. When more open water was 
reached storm after storm was encountered, and the Itoosevelt was beaten 
back and forth for days, until she finally reached Labrador. The voyage 
from Labrador southward was also very stormy. 

The Amundsen Polar Expedition. — Capt. Koald Amundsen re- 
turned to Christiania towards the close of November, after his three and 
a half years' absence in Polar regions. The records of his magnetic 
observations will be worked out in Christiania, and he has presented 
his entire collection to the Norwegian Government. Among the honours 
which he has received may be mentioned the cross of St. Olaf bestowed 
upon him by the King of Norway. Before leaving America, Captain 
Amundsen was entertained by the Geographic Society of Chicago, when 
addresses were delivered by American geographers and others. The 
first-fruits of Captain Amundsen's expedition have already reached us 
in the form of a pamphlet entitled Northern JFaters, by Dr. Fridtjof 
Nansen, which discusses the results obtained during the (z/'ca's preliminary 
oceanographical cruise in 1901, in their relation to the question of the 
origin of the bottom waters of the Northern Seas. 

New Arctic Expedition. — It is reported from St. Petersburg that 
an expedition to the Arctic regions is being equipped there under the 
leadership of Lieutenant-Colonel Sergeyeff. The expedition is expected 
to last for several years, and will start from Yeniseisk, making from 
there for Behring Strait. 

The Duke of Orleans' Greenland Expedition. — In vol. xxi. 
p. 610 we give a brief account of the chief results obtained by the Duke 
of Orleans in his expedition to the north-east coast of Greenland in the 
BeJgica during the summer of 1905. In La Giograiihie for September 
15, Commandant de Gerlache gives a detailed account of the cruise, 
accompanied by a chart of the ocean between Spitsbergen, Greenland 
and Iceland, and a sketch-map of the new parts of the coast of Greenland 
discovered by the expedition. A narrative of the expedition by the Duke 
has also reached us, and a volume of scientific results is to appear shortly. 

Perhaps the most interesting point as regards the general results is 
the proof of the existence of an elevation of the sea-bottom between 
Spitsbergen and Greenland. In lat. 78° 13' and long. 5' W. of 
Greenwich successive soundings of 1476 fathoms, 1152 fathoms, and 779 
fathoms were obtained, indicating a rapid rise. At a later stage in the 
cruise, in almost the same latitude, but in long. 14° W., off the coast of 
Greenland, a submarine bank rising to 31 fathoms of the surface was 
found, but unfortunately the condition of the pack prevented the 
complete investigation of this region. It is, however, possible that an 
island occurs here. The elevation has been called the Belgica bank. 

The sketch-map shows the new portion of the coastline so far as it 
was possible to depict this under the very unfavourable conditions of 


fog which prevailed. The stretch of land previously called France Land 
has now been called Duke of Orleans Land, while the island on which 
Cape Philippe is placed, and on which a landing was effected, has been 
named He de France. This island is apparently an old moraine, and 
proved to be nearly bare of ice in its southern part. Though there is very 
little vegetable soil yet the flora proved rich, 19 phanerogams, 7 mosses, 
4 fungi, and 6 lichens being found here. 

Scottish National Antarctic Expedition. — Another of the bottle- 
floats despatched on the voyage of the Scotia has been received by the 
Admiralty. This float was thrown overboard on July 2, 1904, in 
lat, 36 5' X., long. 30' 50' W., and was recovered on November 6, 

1906, about two miles from the north end of Long Island, Bahamas, 
lat. 23"- 20' X., long. 75" 07' W. The bottle thus travelled at least 
2427 miles in 867 days or less, or at an average rate of at least 
2 '8 miles per day. 


The Italian Geographical Congress of 1907. — By the courtesy 
of the Executive Committee, Ave have received a copy of the circular in 
regard to the meeting of the Italian Geographical Congress, from which 
we extract the following details : — 

The Congress is to bo held in Venice, from the 26th to 31st May 

1907, under the patronage of H.M. the King of Italy. Intending 
members must send in an intimation, with the subscription of 10 lire, 
addressed "Al Comitate Esecutivo del Yl Congresso Geografico Italiano, 

The President of the Executive Committee is Baron Treves de' 
Bonfili, senator. 

The Congress is divided into four sections: — 1. Mathematical, 
physical, and anthropological geography. 2. Economic, commercial, and 
colonial geography. 3. Educational (geography in education ; the culti- 
vation and diffusion of geographical knowledge). 4. Historic (the 
history of geography and cartography, place-names, etc.). 

The Council is endeavouring to secure all facilities for the members, 
so that both travelling and accommodation may be as reasonable as 
possible. Tempting excursions of various kinds are being planned. 

The Geographical Association. — The annual meeting of the 
Geographical Association was held at the London School of Economics 
and Political Science on January 4. The annual report shows that the 
Association is steadily increasing its membership, there being now 535 
members on the roll. The President of the Association, Mr. Douglas 
Freshfield, in his address discussed at some length the recent action of 
the Civil Service Commissioners in excluding the subject of geography 
from the e.x;aminations for the Foreign Office and Diplomatic Service, 
and expressed the hope that the recent decision would be soon reversed. 
Subsequently Dr. W. X. Shaw delivered a lecture on Atmospheric 


Ninth International Geographical Congress. — We have received 
the Invitation Circular together with the preliminary prograniine of this 
Congress, which is to be held at Geneva from July 27 to August 6, 1908. 
Copies of the Circular, together with forms of application for member- 
ship, may be obtained from the Comity d' Organisation, Atheuee, Geneva, 
Switzerland, while subscriptions should be paid to M. Paul Boma, 3, 
boulevard du Theatre, Geneva. The preliminary programme is of a very 
attractive nature, and the proceedings are expected to include two or three 
excursions to the Central Alps, so readily accessible from the city. The 
President is to be Dr. Arthur de Claperede, the President of the 
Geographical Society of Geneva. 


In the December number of the Geograjihical JoxirnaJ there appears in full 
the paper on Social Geography which Professor G. W. Hoke read at the 
last meeting of the British Association. This paper may be strongly 
recommended to the notice of teachers because of its fresh and interest- 
ing outlook. Professor Hoke defines social geography as the subject which 
deals with the distribution in space of social phenomena, the object, as 
in the case of any other science, being the ultimate acquisition of the 
power of predicting the future distribution of similar phenomena. Now 
it is, of course, a commonplace of geographers that the characteristics of a 
social group are in a large measure determined by the surrounding physical 
conditions — probably no lesson on the people of Great Britain was ever 
given without some allusion to the " silver sea " ; but man is a migratory 
animal, and when he travels to a new environment he carries with him 
into the new region the social and other characteristics produced in the 
old. The result is that the new group produced cannot be explained 
simply in terms of the new physical conditions. Professor Hoke illustrates 
this point by two striking examples. The American Indian in the 
Mississippi exemplified man as hunter, and the only result of the 
impact of European culture was to make him hunter more than ever 
by giving him weapons which made hunting more eflfective. But when 
the European migrants poured into the same valley their traditions 
made them largely agriculturists before pressure of space made this a 
necessity of life. A remnant by social atavism swung back to the 
hunter's life, and became much like the Indians. Still another portion 
with the migratory instinct which had brought them thither predomin- 
ating, devoted themselves to methods of transportation. Thus we have 
an example of one type of physical conditions producing three types of 
social life. On the other hand, as the stream of migrants to the west 
pushed through the Appalachian barrier on their way, a portion of them 
were left behind in the mountains and remain there to this day in 
almost the same social condition as that in which they reached the new 
continent. Originating from the Highlands of Scotland, they have 
preserved in the Appalachians almost all their racial characteristics, 


while their brethren of the west haAe segregated into hunters, farmers^ 
and commercial men. 

The other example is the changes which the immigrant Asiatic 
nomads have undergone in the Balkans. Pouring in upon Europe 
through the Ural Gap some of these found themselves in their southern 
course penned in the valleys of the Balkans. Retreat was impossible 
because of the pressure behind, advance by the relief of the land, hence 
a forced adaptation had to take place. But the whole social life was 
based upon the free life of the steppe, and the community therefore 
split into two sections. The most adaptable became agriculturists and 
modified their whole organisation to suit, the other section, for whom 
this was impossible, naturally became robbers and brigands. The difter- 
ence then between their fate and that of the Appalachian Highlanders 
is not based upon any geographical difference of relief but upon a 
difference of social tradition. 

Geographers have often shown how important is the assistance which 
their science can lend to the historian — a point which is emphasised 
below ; but this paper of Professor Hoke's is interesting as showing that 
the converse is also true, that the geographer requires to call in the aid 
of the historian before he can fully explain the reaction of man to his 
environment. We may say even farther that the new and as yet 
despised science of sociology must also be called to his aid. As sug- 
gested above, however, we might say that what Professor Hoke calls 
the social status is in essence merely a geographical factor, for it is the 
product of the previous physical surroundings of the race. 

Another interesting paper which illustrates a second way in which 
historical and geographical teaching may be correlated, is to be found in 
the Annales dc Geographie for November 15. The article is entitled " La 
Geographie de la Circulation, selon Frederick Ptatzel," and the author, 
M. Hiickel, aims at giving a general critical account of Ratzel's views on 
the development of ways of communication, as these views are set forth 
in the last edition of Political Geography. Incidentally M. Hiickel 
has a good deal to say himself that is fresh and interesting. 

It is impossible here to give a general account of the article, which 
should be consulted by those interested, but a few striking points may 
be mentioned. The central point is that historically the means of com- 
munication have shown a constant tendency to evolve, and that this 
evolution affords an interesting parallelism in development with the 
more familiar evolution of the drainage systems of the earth's surface, as 
this evolution has been expounded by the physical geographer. The 
tendency has always been to shorten the line, and though for a time 
trade may be artificially forced to take a certain course, in the long-run 
the tendency is for it to take the course marked out by the physical 
features of the earth. Very striking in its relation to history is the 
dictum that the tendency is always for the trade routes to pass from the 
surface of the land to the oceans or the rivers. This tendency, of which 
there are many examples, has had a very important bearing on the 
history of many of the nations. Thus the discovery of America and the 


utilisation of the sea-route to India ruined the Mediterranean area and 
the countries to the east of it which had grown rich on the carrying 
trade from the Far East. One of the most curious examples of the 
reversal of a historic process is the way in which the opening of the 
8uez Canal has brought back wealth and prosperity to parts of that 
ruined area. Again, the vast historical importance, in their different 
ways, of the Semites, the Greeks, the Italians of the Middle Ages and 
later, is geographically to be explained as due to the fact that these 
nations were the middlemen between the resources of the East and the 
civilisation of the West. Once more, the persistent historical error which 
has led the Westerns to greatly overestimate the former importance of 
such countries as Arabia has a geographical origin. Arabia was never 
anything but an entrepot, a country on the great trade route from the 
East to the West, but owing to the vast distance which in the days of 
slow transport separated the Far East from the West it came to be 
erroneously regarded as itself the region of origin of the commercial 
products. These are only a few of the interesting points with which the 
paper deals, but they may serve to show other ways besides that men- 
tioned above in which history and geography may be correlated. 



Spain and her People. By J. Zimmerman, LL.D. London : T. Fisher Unwin, 
1906. Pp. 350. Price 10s. U. net. 

While Spain has for many years been one of the favourite resorts of British 
travellers, the author informs us that his American fellow-countrymen have been 
deterred from going there by "blood-curdling tales." We have no idea whence 
these tales originated, and, like the author, are satisfied that there was no founda- 
tion for them. Like him, too, we always found the Spanish people courteous and 
kind. The author dwells on the historic depopulation of Spain, pointing out that 
"from a population of 70,000,000 in the days of the Emperor Augustus, Spain has 
dwindled to barely 18,000,000." He does not inform us, however, how he obtained 
the statistics of Spain during the reign of Augustus Cajsar. He remarks that her 
main modern disabilities are the existence of 70 per cent, of illiterates, lack 
of individual enterprise and patriotism, absence of cohesion among her different 
provinces, constant friction from various quarters, prevailing poverty, and a 
depleted treasury. This is a heavy indictment and is probably true, with the 
exception of want of patriotism, for as the Spanish guerilla war against the 
French proved during the Peninsular AVar, the Spaniards could fight valiantly 
against a foreign foe. L^nfortunately, the Spaniards are their own worst 

Dr. Zimmerman's tour carried him from Algeciras to Grenada, and he describes 
graphically the Alhambra. Then follow Seville, Cordova, INIadrid, The Escorial, 
Segovia, Toledo, Saragossa, and Barcelona, with chapters on Spanish Life and 
Character, the Spanish Inquisition, the Expulsion of the Jews, the Moors in 
Spain and their expulsion. Causes of the Decline of Spain, and the Future of 
Spain. He found travelling in Spain agreeable, the hotels comfortable, and tiie 
railway trains punctual although slow. We can commend his descriptions as full 


and accurate, while the illustrations are well selected and well executed, although 
a map might have been added. 

As a British princess is now Queen of Spain, great interest is in Britain 
naturally taken in Spain's future. The author discusses it from an American point 
of view, and remarks that if America had the control of Spain, " it would be easy 
enough to say that Spain would become one of the great countries of Europe, for 
all the natural possibilities remain, and there is no reason for the continuance of 
bad government, with ignorance, intolerance, and poverty that stand in the way 
of progress." He points out that the rivers of Spain do not help her like those of 
America, the Guadalquiver being the only really navigable one. He contends 
that " what Spain needs is a radical change in ideas and customs, and this must 
come from without," and advises her to send hundreds of her young men to the 
United States to study American methods of progress, declaring "We could 
make a new and great country out of Spain within twenty-five years,'" for " Spain 
is rich in natural resources, and by proper cultivation the productive wealth could 
be increased at least threefold, and this is not overestimating her industrial 

A Scientific Geography. Book II., The British Isles. By Ellis W. Heaton, 
B.Sc, F.G.S. London : Ealph Holland and Co., 1906. Price Is. 6cl. 

This is a good little book, the first published of a series, intended, as the 
preface states, rather to correlate and explain the facts of geography than to set 
them forth. The chief fault we have to fiad is that the book is throughout written 
with, as it were, one eye upon the examiner. The object of the student — for the 
book is not intended for junior pupils — is supposed to be to get through his ex- 
amination rather than to realise the joy of knowing and of reasoning. From the 
geographer's point of view this is a grave neglect, if not an unnatural one. But 
there is much that is fresh and interesting in the treatment, and the teacher will get 
many hints from the perusal of the book. The constant insistence upon simple 
sketch-maps is a valuable feature, though those actually given are usually rough. 

Baedelcer's Rhine from Rotterdam to Constance. With 52 Maps and 29 Plans. 
Sixteenth Revised Edition. 1906. Price 7 marks. 

" The Rhine " is perhaps one of the most popular volumes of Baedeker's Series, 
and no eft'ort seems to be spared to maintain its popularity. The fifteenth edition 
was issued in 1903, and ia the revision consequent on the three years' interval no 
less than 7 new maps and 3 plans have been added. 

Handy Guide to Norway. By Thoma.s B. Willsox, M.A. With 7 3Iaps. 
Fifth Edition. London : Edward Stanford, 1906. Price 5s. 

New routes and hotels are every year being added to the many attractions for 
the tourist in Norway, so that old editions of guide-books soon become obsolete. 
Mr. Willson's little handbook has been revised and augmented in the present 
edition, and forms a most useful compendium of jn-actical information for 

Christian Rome. By J. W. and A. M. Crcikshank. London : Grant Richards, 
1906. Price 3s. 6f/. net. 

The Eternal City offers so much to be seen that special hand-books are 
necessary. In this one the Rome of Christian times is thoroughly investigated, 
beginning with the Early Church illustrated by the Catacombs, then proceeding 
to the Bishopric of Rome as localised in St. John Lateran, St. Peter's, and the 


Vatican. A valuable series of excursions is given with drives about the city, 
also a summary of the principal examples of Early Medifeval, Gothic, and 
Renaissance art in Rome. After a description of the various churches and 
picture galleries in Rome, a detailed account is appended of Subiaco, 45 miles 
east of the city, for the compilers consider that an eSbrt should be made to 
visit this place " not only for its associations as the cradle of Western monasticism, 
but also as affording a dramatic contrast to the effects of the ecclesiasticism of the 
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in the Roman churches." The volume is 
most carefully compiled, practically arranged, and of a form suitable for the pocket . 

A Gruise across Europe. By Donald Maxwell. London : John Lane, 1906. 

Price 10s. Qd. 
This amusing book, some of the pages of which recall the well-known style of 
Jerome K. Jerome, is a "collection of notes and sketches," made in the course of 
a cruise across Europe by a route probably unknown to nine-tenths of our readers 
or even to many experienced yachtsmen. The Walru?, crossed from an unnamed 
seaport near Flushing to Willemstad in North Brabant, and from there made her 
way to the Black Sea " by devious windings through the Continent of Europe, by 
river and canal and across the Franconian Jura Mountains, by means of Charle- 
magne's ancient and almost unknown waterway to the valley of the Danube." 
Nothing very exciting or remarkable occurred in the course of the cruise, unless 
we account as exciting the fact, that the author and his companion were twice 
supposed to be spies, first, in Holland, and again, at a soaall Hungarian village 
near Buda-Pestli, and were detained for a short time pending receipt of official 
instructions from the authorities. On another occasion they found themselves on 
the festival of St. Mark in an obscure Hungarian village, where the populace 
mistook them for holy pilgrims on their way to Palestine and liberally regaled 
them with goods and presents. Some of the hundred illustrations are clever and 
amusing, and spacial attention is invited by the publisher to the frontispiece 
" which has been specially reproduced under the direction of the author." 


Things Seen in Japan. By Clive Holland. London: Seeley and Co., 
1907. Price 2s. net. 
This little book bears out its title. There are no fewer than fifty photographs 
which reproduce scenes characteristically Japanese, while the book itself gives a 
better idea of Japanese life than many a more pretentious volume. It will be 
enjoyed by every one who reads it. Mr. Holland cannot altogether disregard the 
change which is coming over the country through its assimilation of Western 
ideas, but his object is clearly to preserve for us the Japan of tradition. Pro- 
bably the traveller must haste if he is to find everything as Mr. Holland describes 
it. But Japan may be trusted not readily to part with customs and manners 
which enter so largely into the life of her people. From this point of view the 
future history of Japan to those who, like Mr. Holland, have known the country 
before its progressive moment must be intensely interesting. 

India. By Pierre Loti. Translated from the French by George A. F. Manan. 

Edited by Robert Harborough Sherrard. London : Werner Laurie, 1906. 

Price 10s. 6d. net. 
The distinguished writer of Madame Chrijsanthomim, does not leave us long in 
doubt as to why he went to India. " I make my way to India," he says in his 
Preface, "the cradle of human faith and thought, with nameless dread, fearing that 



I may find nothing but a cruel and final deception. I have not come here to make 
a trifling call, but to ask or beg the keepers of the Aryan wisdom to give me their 
belief in the lasting duration of the soul in place of the ineffable Christian faith 
which has vanished from my soul.'' After a few days in Ceylon he crossed the " ever- 
raging" Gulf of Manar, and on the 20th December 1899 landed on the Travancore 
coast. Apparently he was in great hopes that the abstruse question of the lasting 
duration of the soul would be solved for him within a week of his arrival. Still 
more remarkable was it that he should imagine his difficulties would be solved by 
the Maharajah of Travancore of all the people in India. His business with the 
Maharajah was to convey to him a French decoration, which he did on Christmas 
Eve ; and after the usual conversation about anything and everything except 
religion Pierre Loti says, "I regret that I have been unable to converse on more 
serious subjects with this amiable prince, whose soul must be so different from our 
own. My first interview has taught me that the mysteries of his inmost thoughts 
will be as impenetrable to me as the great temple. There is a radical difference 
of race, ancestry, and religion between us : thus we do not speak the same language, 
and the necessity of speaking througli a third person forms (in spite of the 
affability of my interpreter) a barrier which isolates us from all communion." 
From Tinnevelli he passed on through Malabar to Pondicherry, and of course 
he does not miss the opportunity of doleful lamentations over the departed 
glories of the formerly prosperous French settlement. Here, however, probably 
to dispel his patriotic gloom, a nautch was given in his honour, which so far as 
he was concerned seems to have been an unqualified success. Readers of his 
other works will know what to expect, and they will not be disappointed. One 
particular bayardere had " come from afar for this evening, from one of the temples 
of the south, where she is in the service of Siva ; her reputation is great, and her 
performances are costly." But it was worth it, "for I dreaded the moment when 
it (her dance) would end and I should see her no more. . . What thoughts can 
there be in the soul of a bayardere of the old race and the pure blood?" To this 
somewhat indiscreet question, most judiciously, no answer is given. From 
Pondicherry he made his way to Haiderabad, or, as he repeatedly and quaintly calls 
it " Nizam," where apparently he first encountered the famine. His description 
of it in Haiderabad and Oodeypoor is lurid enough, but it is not till he gets to 
the country of Ragput (sic) and "the beautiful rose-coloured city," i.e. Jaipur, 
that he lets himself go. And then neither in the pages of the English Defoe nor in 
those of his own countryman Zola do we find such triumphs of gruesome realism 
as we find in this volume. One passage, and that by no means above the average 
in horrors, will suffice for quotation. "A French stranger alights and advances 
towards one of these dreadful, inert heaps of starving human beings, and stoops 
down to place pieces of money into their lifeless hands. Immediately it is as 
though a horde of mummies had suddenly risen from the dead. Hands emerge 
from the rags that covered the heap, and withered and bony forms rise slowly 
from the ground. The ghastly resurrection suddenly extends to other heaps lying 
hidden behind the piles of merchandise, the crowds and the furnaces of the 
pastrycooks, for they seethe and stir and grovel on the ground. Then a swarm 
of phantoms advances with faces of dead men, with horrible, grinning teeth, with 
eyes whose lids have been eaten away by the flies, with breasts that hang 
like empty bags on their hollow chests, and with bones Avhich rattle as they 
walk. Instantly the stranger is encircled by those spectres of the charnel-house." 
From Jaipur he of course visited Amber, where he casually mentions he heard 
"the melancholy, flute-like voice of wandering jackals," a description of the 
jackals' hideous yells which we make bold to say has never occurred to any one 


before or since. From Amber he went on to Gwalior, where he inspected the 
fcimous fortress and Lashkar from the top of an elephant, " so tall that we were on a 
level with the first floors of the houses. The streets were so narrow that we could 
even touch the delicate traceries of the sculptured galleries on which fair ladies 
were sitting, who saluted us as we jiassed by," a proceeding, which must have 
greatly amused or scandalised the mahout and attendants. From Grwalior he 
paid a short visit to Jagganath, and then went on to Agra and Delhi, where the 
magnificent buildings of the Moghals seem merely to have filled him with melan- 
choly and gloom. "The land," he says, "in which the Mogul Emperors lived is 
now but a winding sheet for ruined towns and palaces," a description calculated 
to evoke a smile from those who have seen the flourishing cities of Delhi, Agra, 
Cawnpore, Lucknow, and many others. At the famous Kutb near Delhi, which 
by the way he c.ills Kuth, and describes as built of pink granite, he heard, "the 
shepherds play on muted pipes," an experience certainly unique in its way. 

The traveller's goal was Benares. He had been assured by the Theosophists in 
Madras, where by the by he heard "the crows intone their noisy hymn to Death," 
that at Benares he would have all his distracting doubts resolved, and would there 
certainly find the peace which even they could not give him. To the suggested 
pilgrimage to Benares accordingly he consented gladly, but decided to " defer that 
last test as long as possible, for I still hesitated like a coward whom a double fear 
assails. It might be that all my hopes would be taken away from me for ever or 
I might Jind. Then perhaps the new way would open out before me and an end 
would come to all these earthly joys, mere illusions doubtless, but still so delight- 
ful." So he wended his way to Benares ; and we have several gruesome and 
realistic descriptions of the Fakirs and cremation of the dead, and of the filth of 
the streets, temples and river. At last he found himself in the House of the 
Masters who " work or meditate the whole day, together or alone. The plain 
tables before them are loaded with those Sanscrit books containing the secrets of 
that Brahmanism which preceded all our religions and philosophies by so many 
thousand years. In these unfathomable books the old thinkers, those sages who 
had clearer vision than any men of our race or age, have inscribed the sum of all 
human knowledge. To them the inconceivable was almost clear, and their long- 
forgotten works now pass our degenerate understanding ; and so, to-day, years of 
initiation are required merely to see, hidden dimly amidst the obscurity of the 
words, the unfathomable depths beyond." Among the masters he found a European 
woman — possibly Mrs. Annie Besant — "her face still beautiful though crowned 
with silver hair, and she lives here barefooted and detached from earthly strife, 
the thrifty and austere life of an ascetic." Guided apparently by her, he took the 
simple oath required of him and became a disciple ; but happily for his readers he 
declines to attempt to repeat what the Masters commenced to teach him. We 
must be content to believe on the traveller's authority that the ISIasters at Benares 
"alone can give answers which will satisfy the burning questionings of the human 
mind, and such evidence is brought before you that it is impossible to doubt the 
continuance of life beyond the terrestrial sphere." And so the traveller seems to 
have had his doubts resolved and to have found the peace of which he was in search. 
Our readers, and especially those of them who know India well, will find this a 
very amusing book. 

Life and Adventure beyond Jordan. By the Rev. S. Robinson Lees, B.A., F.E.S.S. 
London : Charles H. Kellj^ 1906. Price 5s. net. 

This pretty, well-written volume owes its value very largely to the illustrations 
from fine photographs by the author. Eight of these are coloured plates, and more 


than a hundred reproduce eflfectively the scenery, the ruins, and sometimes the people 
of Eastern Palestine, from the cedar of Lebanon south through El Hauran, Bashau, 
Gilead, and Moab. The book is popularly written, and frequently illustrates the 
narratives of the Bible ; but it is not scientific, and has little geographical value. 

Indian Life in Totvn and Conntry. By Herbert Comptox. London : George 
Newnes, Limited, 1906. Price 3s. 6d. 

This little volume on Indian Life in Town and Country is the latest inblica- 
tion of "Our Empire" series. In the short compass of 200 pages Mr. Compton, 
who seems to have been a tea-planter, has made a creditable attempt to convey to 
English readers his impressions of ordinarylndianlife and manners, both among the 
nativesand among the Europeans. And we have little doubt but that Mi\ Compton 
intends to be scrupulously accur&te, and he must be acquitted of any charge of 
conscious malice or exaggeration. But Anglo-Indians who have bad quite as mrch 
exf eiienceof India as Mr. Comjtcn will smile at such statements as these, "bribery 
and corruption are the rule, not the exception, in the East. In eveiy transaction of 
life it is held to be not only allowable but sensible to derive some advantage over 
and above the scheduled amount." "When you come to the subordinate judicial 
staff, the active judge s and magistrates, with restricted powers and comparatively 
small salaries, you may take it as an axiom that, in our slang phrase, they are all 
' on the make.' Prudence alone puts a limit to their harvest." ",The Indian 
native official is a currish-spirited thirg at the bottom ... a consummate actor 
and Machiavellian schemer, who seldom fails to worm himself into favour." 
" Crime is safe and easy in the zenana, for even the law halts on the threshold." 
Even when he is describing Anglo-Indian life Mr. Compton cannot be accepted 
as ordinarily accurate, when he says, " India luxuriates in hermetically sealed 
stores. 1 hese are the dainties of Anglo-Indian daily life, the delicacies of the 
dinner-party." " Ladies are pedantically jealous, and woe betide the unhappy 
hostess who makes some quite unintentional error in the order in which she sends 
her guests into dinner." "The press of India does not represent public opinion, 
but the views of Government ; its chief subscribers are Government officials, and 
it is dependent on the powers that be for news, not to mention fat contracts for 
advertising and printing. The non-official is without a vote, without representa- 
tion, without privileges, and without rights, even although he be a free-born 
Englishman." But enough of quotations. We are inclined to suspect that Mr. 
Compton is atten)pting to describe some phases of India of at least a generation 
ago. Even if this is the case many of his descriptions will not be accepted as 
correct by those who knew the country well in those days, any more than they can 
be accepted as true of India in the twentieth century. 


Second Report : Wellcome Research Laboratories at the Gordon Memorial College, 
Khartoum. By Andrew Balfour, M.D., B.Sc, F.E.C.P.Edin., D.P.H. 
Camb. Published by the Department of Education, Khartoum, 1906. 

This valuable volume gives the results of the work done at the Wellcome 
Research Laboratories at the Gordon Memorial College, Khartoum. To 
geographers it is of great interest on account of the work it is doing in render- 
ing the Sudan more healthy and thus opening it up for possible settlement. 
To the medical profession the war against malaria and the ascertaining of 
the causes of tropical diseases will appeal. The success of the measures taken to 


exterminate mosquitoes and other infection-bearing insects is wonderful and most 

The book contains a wealth of information for the sanatarian, doctor, and 
naturalist ; it is exceedingly well produced, and reflects the greatest credit upon 
Dr. Andrew Balfour, the Director of the Laboratories, and his assistants. 

Being of an entirely technical character, it is not a book for detailed review by 
us, but we very warmly commend it to those engaged in the warfare against 
tropical disease. We are glad to see that attention is now to be paid to agricul- 
tural chemistry, bacteriology, etc. 

The illustrations are excellent. 

Portuguese East Africa. By R. C. K Maugham. London : John Murray, 
1906. Price 15s. net. 

This interesting work on Portuguese East Africa, and more particularly on the 
districts of Maurica and Sofala is very welcome, as it supplies a distinct want. 
^Ye have a plethora of works of all sorts and qualities about British Africa ; we 
have had a lurid light thrown more than once on the Congo State ; and we know 
a good deal about French and Geiman Africa. A trustworthy work from an able 
officer of sufficient experience, dealing with several important subjects of interest 
in Portuguese East Africa was wanted, and is found in the volume now before us 
by Mr. Maugham, the British Consul of Mozambique and Zambesia. A perusal 
of the work shows that Mr. Maugham has many peculiar qualifications for the 
task. He very modestly observes that "this book is intended for the traveller, 
the sportsman, and for him whose delight lies in those scenes of natural unem- 
bellished beauty and grandeur which Africa possesses in such profusion and 
variety '' ; but in addition to these, the book will successfully appeal to the student 
of history, anthropology, colonisation and administration, and to the ever- 
widening circle of those who are interested in "dark" if not "darkest" Africa. 
Mr. Maugham has had twelve years' experience of the regions which he describes, 
and it is very obvious, that he has not only made excellent use of his exceptional 
opportunities, but that, in a more than ordinarily trying climate, he has had the 
requisite energy and ability to see and think for himself, and to state his matured 
convictions and observations with eloquence and persuasive force. We trust 
we do not misrepresent him, when we say, that, apparently, the book is primarily 
intended for sportsmen, and in this respect his book necessarily challenges 
comparison with the works of such mighty hunters as Selous, Schillings, Gibbons 
and many others. Such comparison, however, is outside the scope of this maga- 
zine, but we may say that his descriptions and stories of big and little game in 
Portuguese East Africa will be found by all his readers to be exceedingly 
interesting and instructive ; and the record of his experiences and his advice as 
to outfit, etc, cannot fail to be most useful to sportsmen. He has many interesting 
observations to make on the habits, customs, character and language of the 
natives of these regions, which well deserve the attention of the student of 
anthropology as well as those whose duty or pleasure induces them to travel or 
sojourn there. The book is equipped with a useful map, and is adorned with 
many excellent illustrations. 

Un Crepuscuh d'Islam. Par Andrie Chevillon. Paris : Hachette, 1906. 
Price 3fr. 50c. 

The author describes his tour through Morocco in April 1905, and proves 
himself a master in observation and word-painting. The motif of his work, 


however, is to show that Morocco is one of the darkest of the many dark places 
of Islam. " It has the majesty of a corpse, and at first the artist perceives nothing 
but this majesty. Before we know the truth we desire ardently that neither the 
artisans nor locomotives of Europe should come to violate its silence and 
immemorial tranquillity, and that Fez should never become like the Tangier of 
to-day, with its Spanish, Jewish, and Marseilles hubbub, its fluring advertisements, 
and all the vulgar uproar from which the true Mussulmans escape, taking refuge 
in the memory of past ages and the lofty white peace of their Kasba. I had 
hoped that in the universal disfigurement of our planet by the civilisation of the 
industrial type which we call civilisation, this country would remain untouched, 
and that there Avould be miraculously perpetuated there a Mussulman Middle 
Age, with its faith and its original forms, thus dreaming an unfettered dream which 
no foreign determination could limit. I have ended with the conviction that 
anything would be better than the present corrupt stagnation. In any case, 
nothing could be lost, for nothing can be worse than death. This is the present 
state of Morocco. It is not enough to merely glance at it, for appearances still 
resemble life. We must look below the surface. We must witness the rapine of 
viziers, governors, khalifas, amels, and motasibs in connection with the taxes they 
impose or take off at their pleasure, and which they first get paid in cash and 
afterwards in body ; we must see their extortions by bastinado and the prison ; 
we must note the misery of the masses, and, as a consequence, the prostitution, 
which is not only universal, but which the authorities encourage because they 
profit by it ; vt'e must observe the male vices, Avhose signs are conspicuous in the 
streets ; the profound degeneration of bodies, which only look well because they 
are draped ; the state of panic in which the inhabitants of towns periodically live 
behind their ruined walls ; the impotence and chronic disorganisation of the army, 
the officers stealing the rations of their men, and the men selling their cartridges 
and rifles to rebels, and deserting whenever they please — to recognise all this 
corruption we must consult, as I have done, not merely the few Europeans born 
or some time resident in the country, whether merchants, official agents, officer 
instructors, or physicians, but Algerian Mussulmans who live at Tangier, ElKsar 
or Fez, and who never speak of what they see except with a contemptuous smile.'" 


Canip-Fires in the Canadian liockies. By William T. Hornaday, Sc.D. London : 
T. Werner Laurie, 1906. Price Ids. net. 

This volume contains the record of a month's holiday in October 1905, spent 
by Dr. Hornaday, Director of the New York Zoological Park, and some sportsmen 
friends in a comparatively little known tract of Britisli Columbia, vi?., the east 
Kootenay region, between the Elk River and Bull River. The holiday was 
devoted for the most part to the pursuit of Mountain Goat and grizzly bears ; 
but the mere slaughter of these animals was by no means the onlj-, or even the 
principal, object of the expedition. Indeed the sportsmen seem to have volun- 
tarily imposed on themselves limitations, which to many will seem unnecessarily 
restricted, even if their moderation is pronounced at once commendable and 
worthy of imitation. For example, devotees of Izaac Walton here will read 
with mixed feelings, that although Dr. Hornaday carried a rod and reel 
twenty-five hundred miles for the sake of one day's fishing on the Fording River, 
when the fateful day arrived, he and his two friends deliberately limited their 
take to fifteen fish, the heaviest of them weighing 2 lbs. 4 oz., on the ground 
that the party could not eat more in two days, although they were lucky 


enough to find the Cut-Throat or Black-Spotted trout taking freely. The 
particular quarry of which Dr. Hornaday and his friends were in quest was, as 
we have already said, the mountain goat, of which they secured some very fine 
specimens now on view in some of the Zoological museums in the United States. 
The Director also succeeded in getting some fine grizzly bears. But, besides 
this, one of the party, Mr. Phillips, succeeded in securing some excellent photo- 
graphs of mountain goats among the wild rocks, which they inhabit, and un- 
doubtedly while getting these photographs, he was again and again inconsiderable 
personal danger. Dr. Hornaday claims for the photographs that they represent 
■what he believes "the most daring, and also the most successful, feat in big-game 
photography ever accomplished," but readers of the well-known work of Mr. 
Schillings, which we reviewed in the August 1906 number of this magazine, will 
hardly acquiesce in this estimate. Nevertheless we can cordially admire the 
extraordinary nerve and endurance on the part of Mr. Phillips, which are 
abundantly evinced by the photographs and the narrative of this work. In- 
cidentally we learn a great deal about the orography of the tract, and about the 
habits of the birds and animals which are found there. There are also several 
short stories, describing exciting incidents and adventures in the sporting career 
of those who narrate them, which will not fail to amuse and interest the reader. 
The illustrations by Mr. Phillips are unusually good. 


Haicaii, Ostmikronesien, nnd Samoa. Meine zweite Siidseereise (1897-99) zimi 
Studium der Atolle nnd ihrer Bewohner. Von Professor Dr. Augustin 
Kramer, Marine Oberstabsarzt. Stuttgart : Strecker & Schroder, 1906. 

This lavishly illustrated work describes in a masterly manner many of the 
islands of the inhabitants of Polynesia. The author piirticularly paid attention 
to the growth of coral reefs and distinctly states that "an atoll as described by 
Dana in his Coral and Coral Islands, and also in Text Books, viz. a great lake 
surrounded by an unbroken slender coral ring, does not exist. At all events, it 
is not typical." He tells how first Semper of Wiirzburg, then Rein of Bonn, 
then Sir John Murray, Guppy, and Alexander Agassi z, disproved the subsidence 
theory of Darwin which Dana upheld. 

Professor Kramer likewise investigated the tatooing common among the 
natives of Polynesia, and figures definite designs followed, being similar to those 
on mats. Illustrations are given showing natives with their backs wholly tatooed, 
while others have their arms and others their cheeks and necks. A choir of 
women sing and beat drums while a man is being tatooed and thus drown his 
painftil cries. Special songs are sung during tatooing, and in them the choir call 
down from heaven power to the tatooer to do his work artistically. Tatooing is 
considered in Polynesia the most noble adornment of the human body, and is 
particularly applied to those parts not covered by clothing. 


Discoveries and Explorations in the (.'entunj. By Charles G. D. Roberts, M.A. 
Nineteenth Century Series. Edinburgh : W. and R. Chambers, 1906. 
Price 5s. net. 

In this book we have a very compact, and for the most part a clear, account of 
the knowledge obtained of all parts of the world during the nineteenth century. 

The labour entailed by the production of such a volume must have been — as 
the author says — very considerable, and any one who wants a bird's-eye view of the 


geographical discoveries in any part of the globe during the time dealt with, will 
find it here with suflBcient fulness, and the reader or student will find also in this 
compendium the names of the principal explorers and a brief outline of the 
work achieved by each. 

A bibliography would have been of great use, but it could perhaps be hardlj 
expected in such a volume. Of course in such a compressed account as the scope 
of this volume admits of there are bound to be omissions, but we think the 
wonder is that the author has succeeded in getting so much in, not that he has 
been obliged to leave some out The perusal of his pages ought to stimulate the 
student to turn to the older and fuller volumes by the explorers themselves. 


The Tourist's India. By Eustace Reynolds-Ball, F.R.G.S., F.R.C.I. 
Demy 8vo. Pp. xii + 355. London : Swan Sonnenschein and Co., Ltd., 1907. 

Tra Me::-Afriho : A Travers I'Afrique Centrale. Conference avec projections 
donnee au 2™*^ Congres Universel d'Esperanto a Geneve, par Le Commaxdaxt 
Lemaire, Ch. Pp. 85. Bruxelles. 1906. 

The East and West Indian Mirror; being an account of Joris Van Speil- 
bergen's Voyage Round the Woiid (1614-1617) and the Australian Navigations 
of Jacob Le Maire. Translated, with Notes and an Introduction, by J. A. J. de 
Villiers. (Hakluyt Society.) Demy 8vo. Pp. 1x1 + 272. London, 1906. 

A Travers la Banquise du Spitzberg axi Gap Philip})e, Mai-Aoat, 1905. Par 
Due D'Orleans. Pp. 350. Paris : Plon Nourrit et Cie., 1907. 

The Heart of Spain: An Artist's Impressions of Toledo. By Stewart Dick. 
Crown 8vo. Pp. xv + 155. Edinburgh : T. N. Foulis, 1907. 

Uganda by Pen and Camera. By C. W. Hattersley. With a Preface 
by T. F. Victoria Buxton. Crown 8vo. Pp. xviii. Price 2s. London : 
Eeligious Tract Society, 1907. 

The Harmsivorth Encyclopmdia. Vols, vii.-viii. London : Thomas Nelson 
and Sons, 1907. 

Also the following Reports, etc. : — 

The Irrigation of Mesopotamia. By Sir William Willcocks, K.C.M.G., 
F.E.G.S. Pp. 153. Cairo, 1905. 

Report on the Administration of Burma for the Year 1905-1906. Rangoon, 

Report on the Administration of Coorg for the Year 1905-1906. Mercaru, 

Rainfall of India. Fifteenth Year, 1905. Calcutta, 1906. 

Palmers and Reports relating to Minerals and Mining of New Zealand. Wel- 
lington, 1906. 

Illustrated Handbook to the Perthshire Natural History Museum, and Brief 
Guide to the Animals, Plants, and Rocks of the County. ^ Second Edition. Pp. 87. 
Price 3d. Perth : Perthshire Natural History Musem^, 1906. 

Willing's Press Guide and Advertiser's Dvrectohj and Handbook, 1907. 
Pp. 457. London, W.C. : James AVilling, Jun., Ltd., 1907. 

Sudan Almanac, 1907. Pp. 67. Price Is. London, 1907. 

Report concerning Canadian Archives for the VeaV 1905. Vol. ii. Ottawa, 

Puhlishers forwarding books for review will greatly oblige by marking the price in 
clear figures, especially in the case of foreign books 





By H.S.H. The Prince of Monaco. 
{With Illustrations.) 

Meteorology is a science which is much less advanced than many 
others. This is due to two principal causes. In the first place, it is 
only quite recently that it has been the object of experimental 
research ; and, in the second place, the field of this research has 
been the latitudes of Europe and Xorth America, in the so-called 
temperate zone, where the conditions are those of transition from the 
simple conditions obtaining at the Equator to the equally simple, but 
opposite, conditions obtaining at the Poles. It is a fundamental axiom 
in scientific research to attack a problem first in its simplest form, and 
to introduce complications, one at a time. In the case of meteorology 
the reverse has been the case. The meteorology of Northern Europe, 
the most complicated and difficult problem in the science, has been 
attacked first, and the reason of this is obvious, because it was there 
that the means of attack were first furnished. 

The beginnings of meteorology were modest, consisting of isolated 
observations made by the curious in natural history, with imperfect and 
often rudimentary instruments ; and it was only after these had become 
more delicate and more precise, and had shown themselves capable of 
throwing light on the mysteries of the air, that true meteorological obser- 
vatories came into existence. At first these were confined to the centres 
of population, but further progress soon made clear the necessity of 
extending the researches into unpeopled and higher strata, with the result 

1 An Address delivered before the Society in Edinburgh on January 17. 


that observatories were installed on the tops of many mountains. About 
the same time aerostats came accidentally to be used for the same 
purpose. Finally, in the last few years, the improvements effected in 
the manufacture of steel have made it possible to fly kites at great 
heights, carrying self- registering instruments and held by a wire, as 
light as it is strong. Now, the india-rubber industry renders it 
possible to send to altitudes hitherto inaccessible by any other means 
balloons also carrying self-registering meteorological instruments. 

The first experimenters Avho used kites were Americans. Guided 
by Edy in 1891 and by Rotch in 1894, their instruments attained a 
height of about 400 and 4000 meters. Shortly afterwards the French 
Hermite and Bezancon in 1892 launched the first hallons- sonde : a much 
more independent class of instruments which very soon attained heights 
above the land up to 20,000 meters (65,620 feet). Quite recently the 
scientific spirit of the Germans, supported by the liberality of the 
Emperor William, has created at Lindenberg, in Prussia, a magnificent 
establishment where meteorological researches in the higher regions of 
the atmosphere are pursued regularly with both systems. These re- 
searches are necessarily restricted to the air over the land. There 
remained the atmosphere over the ocean, a much greater region, and its 
exploration appeared to be of paramount importance. It was Professor 
Hergesell of Strasburg, in the year 1904, who first interested me in the 
subject, and I decided at once to attack it. 

In the spring of the same year I was able, after making some altera- 
tions in the sounding machine of my ship, the Princesse Alice, to use it 
for sending kites to a height of 4500 meters in the northern region of 
the trade winds between Portugal and the Canary Islands. 

In order that the kite which carries the recording instruments — a 
combination of barometer, thermometer, and hygrometer, weighing 600 
grams, shall ascend to any great height it is necessary to attach to 
the line or wire a series of kites at intervals varying from 500 to 1500 
meters. Each of these, by adding its effort to that of the one which 
precedes it, contributes to the ascensional force of the system at the 
moment when the weight of the wire in the air would stop further 
upward movement. By successive relays it is possible to send a kite 
with instruments to a very great height, provided that no layers of 
calm are met with, or if they exist, that the speed of the ship is such 
that the kite can be towed at a minimum speed of seven meters per 
second (15i miles per hour). 

Theoretically, if the dimensions of the kites and the diameter of the 
wire were progressively increased, it would be possible to reach heights 
limited only by the rarification of the air. In practice, however, it is 
found that, owing to the difficulties attending the dispatch of kites on 
board ship, and the complications which arise from the fact that the 
upper currents travel in directions which generally vary irregularly from 
one level to another, a height of 6000 or 7000 meters is the greatest 
that can be reached. In a recent experiment at Lindenberg, in which the 
kite reached a height of 6000 meters, it was necessary to veer 17,000 
meters of cable, and the final strain on the wire was 85 kilograms. 


An experiment, using kites of the Hargrave type, is conducted as 
follows : — After having made sure that the line which forms the upper 
section of the flying line has a length of 50 meters, and connects the kite 
with the wire, exerts a normal and well-balanced strain on the apparatus, 
and when the velocity of the wind, augmented if necessary by giving a 
certain speed to the ship, has reached at least seven meters per second, 
the kite carrying the instruments is hoisted by a line from the mizzen- 
mast head, and is then allowed to rise gradually and attain a height where 
the dangerous vortices caused by the ship cease. When the kite sails 
tranquilly at the end of its line, which is held by several men, whose 
hands are protected by stout gloves, the masthead block is brought 
down on deck and the line of the kite is joined to the steel wire, which 
can then be veered from the steam winch on which it is wound. 
The same manoeuvres have to be repeated as each addition is made to 
the system. 

A girouette,^ from which the wire quits the ship, carries a 
dynamometer which indicates the tension of the wire and at the same 
time performs the function of a regulator of the strains produced by the 
pitching of the ship or by squalls in the atmosphere. 

The kites of the Hargrave type work very well, and the steel wire 
which I use has a diameter and resistance which gradually increase as 
more wire is paid out. This is the principle which I apply to my 
dredging and sounding cables, in order to spare useless weight in the 
upper section : it is indispensable in kite ascents, in order to attain 
great heights by lightening the upper section of the wire. 

An observer stationed at the girouette conducts the whole opera- 
tion, communicating with the man at the winch by means of an electric 
bell. He records regularly by means of the sextant the heights of the kite 
which carries the instruments, in order to know its position with respect 
to the shij) and to ascertain approximately the influences to which it is 
exposed in the successive layers thi'ough which it passes. 

The launching of a kite from a ship is always a delicate operation, 
and one which demands experience on account of the vortices found in 
the aerial wake of the ship : of which those visible in the aqueous wake 
are the image. Often when the apparatus has reached a height where 
it appears to be out of danger it may be caught by one of these risky 
vortices and precipitated into the sea. In stormy weather such a cata- 
strophe may occur even after the kite has risen to a height of several 
hundred meters. 

When the wind is strong enough and the bridle (the object of which 
is to keep the face of the kite to which it is attached horizontal) is not 
very exactly balanced, the kite at once executes plunging zigzag move- 
ments which may produce such a strain as to break the line. 

When the kites have reached the greatest altitude permitted by 
the circumstances, the paying out of the wire is stopped, and, either by 
increasing the speed of the ship, or by heaving in the wire as quickly 
as possible, a little final augmentation of height is obtained. 

1 The girouette is a pivoted wheel free to revolve with the wind in auy direction. 


The recovery of the kites, although somewhat delicate, presents less 
difficulty than their dispatch. As at the launching of the kite, a sub- 
sidiary line is used which is run alongside of the bridle as soon as this 
is got hold of, so as to limit the motions of the kite. 

Unfortunately, even with the greatest care accidents occur. On 
one occasion, in the neighbourhood of the Canary Islands, the 
rupture of the wire occasioned the loss of five kites attached to 6000 
meters of wire. In a case such as this, the Avhole system descends until 
the lowest kite touches the sea. This then acts as a drag, which causes 
the others to ascend again until a condition of equilibrium is reached, 
when the whole system drifts in a direction, which is the resultant of 
the separate impulses received by each kite on the wire. The velocity 
of this drift has almost always been too great for the kites to be over- 
taken by my ship. The system has certainly di-ifted so far and as long 
as the wind has lasted. 

One can imagine the astonishment of the crew of a vessel which 
meets and gets entangled with such a wire, apparently suspended from a 
point invisible in space. 

It is interesting to note that the curves furnished by our instru- 
ments can resist a prolonged immersion without suffering damage when 
they meet with such an accident. The curve is a line traced by the 
pen on a layer of lamp-black, deposited on the cylinder by the smoky 
flame of a petroleum lamp. In a case of immersion the carbonaceous 
particles disappear, but an excessively thin coating of grease, deposited 
with the carbon from the flame, remains and the line traced by the point 
of the pen is clearly visible in it with a magnifying glass. 

A notable instance occurred during one of my earliest experiments 
in the Mediterranean in 1904. An instrument was lost to the north- 
ward of Corsica, and was found on the shore of Provence fifteen days 
later. The curves traced in the greasy film on the recording drum Avere 
still perfectly visible, and w-ere utilised with the others in Professor 
Hergesell's laboratory. 

A kite operation, at a height of 3000 or 4000 meters, lasts almost 
the whole day, and the ship, which must at times steam full speed in 
order to enable the kites to pass through zones of light wind or of calm, 
may easily cover a distance of 50 or 60 miles during the operation. 

I have made use of these instruments in the investigation of the 
counter-trade of the northern hemisphere and with the following 
results. The kites sent to a height of 4500 meters have not furnished 
any indication which permitted Professor Hergesell to recognise the 
existence of the counter-trades in the regions explored, although their 
existence has often been reported by observers. As to the observation of 
Humboldt of a south-west wind at the summit of the Peak of Tenerife, 
it is to be explained in another manner. If one observes, as I did in the 
summer of 1904, what takes place among the Canary Islands during the 
season of the trade winds, one sees sometimes that the region of the sea, 
which lies to the southward of the higher islands, as far as a distance of 
20 or 30 miles from their coast, is swept by a strong south-westerly 
wind. According to Professor Hergesell, this wind is due to a purely 


local cause. The southern slopes of these islands, bearing little vegeta- 
tion, exposed to the rays of a powerful sun and sheltered from the trade 
wind, produce a dilatation of the atmosphere in the neighbourhood, 
which rises along the slopes and overflows at the summit, overcoming 
and, to a certain extent, reversing the trade wind. Humboldt and 
others have been led by this phenomenon to believe that they were in 
presence of the counter-trade. 

It would not occur to any one to pretend that the counter-trade does 
not exist. The masses of air drawn into the tropical regions by the 
trade winds of both hemispheres, must regain the regions abandoned by 
them, but the path which they follow is still unexplored. 

After a season's work with kites in the Atlantic, I resolved to apply 
to the meteorological research of the atmosphere at great altitudes above 
the ocean, the system of ballons-sonde which had already been giving 
excellent results on the continents. With the assistance of Professor 
Hergesell I made several tentative experiments in the Mediterranean in 
the spring of 1905, chiefly with the view of making myself familiar 
with the difficulties which such operations present, and especially with 
reference to the recovery of the balloon when it has descended again on 
the sea. The final method of procedure was the following. 

Two very light india-rubber balloons were inflated, one to a slightly 
greater extent than the other, with hydrogen of which a supply was 
carried in steel cylinders. The less inflated balloon carried the registering 
instrument, enclosed in a small basket, an instrument analogous to that 
used with the kites, but more complete, as well as a float suspended at the 
end of a line 50 meters long. The more inflated balloon was connected 
with the other by a line also 50 meters in length. Its function was, 
first, to facilitate the ascent by rendering the necessary assistance to the 
other balloon and, afterwards, to facilitate its descent with the 
registering instrument by quitting it at the altitude determined before- 
hand by the degree of inflation given, on which depends the height at 
which the balloon burst. The first balloon, now become a simple 
parachute, brought the instrument back towards the sea, above which it 
remained floating so soon as the float at the end of the stray line 
touched the surface of the water. In this way, the basket containing 
the instrument was kept clear of the waves, and the balloon remained 
visible at a distance of 8 to 10 miles. During the ascent it was 
necessary to make observations as often as possible with the sextant and 
the compass so as to fix the altitude and azimuth of the balloons at 
diff"erent instants with a view to establishing the route followed through 
the air, and thus to obtain the elements for arriving at a knowledge of 
the strength and direction of the aerial currents in the diff'erent layers 
traversed. It must be understood that the ship was following the 
system at full speed, in order not to lose sight of it, a result which was 
obtained, thanks not only to the excellent prismatic glasses used, but 
also to the keenness of sight of some of the observers. An operation 
of this kind was possible only in very clear weather, because the 
disappearance of the balloons behind a cloud would have made very 
doubtful the discovery of the place where they fell. 

Fig. 1. — Filling tlie balloon ami stoijpiiig up small holes. 

Fig. 2. — The instruments coming safely on board. 

Fig. 3.— End of the experiment, the balloon returning on board 
with the baskets for the instruments. 



In these conditions I made a cruise of 5500 miles in 1905 in the 
Atlantic, during which eighteen experiments were made with balloons 
up to a height of 14,000 meters, of which most were successful, and 
confirmed the conclusion of the previous year with regard to the 
counter trade-wind, arrived at with kites used at lesser elevations. 

But this method presented various grave difficulties; first, the 
recovery of the balloon if it liad been sent to a great height, and second, 
the exact fixation of the point Avhere the ascent of the balloon would be 
stopped by the bursting of the subsidiary balloon. In fact, any fault in 
the india-rubber of which the balloon was made might advance or 
retard the time of explosion. From the year 1905 we have sought to 
remedy these difficulties, and have succeeded as follows. 

In the first place, we can now recover the balloon with its instrument, 
no matter what may be the distance of the point where it reaches the 
sea. Relying on the fact that, from its culminating point down to the 
surface of the sea, the system passes through meteorological conditions 
which are sensibly similar to those which it had met with during its 
ascent, we have established a formula which permits us, if we have 
followed the balloons during the greater part of their ascent, to trace 
rapidly on the chart the route which the ballon parachute will 
follow during its descent, and consequently, the point of the sea where 
it will fall. The ship can now be steered for this point without the 
necessity of following the balloon. Our formula has afforded us the 
means of finding the balloon on all occasions when its course has not 
been disturbed by accidental causes. We made the first successful use 
of the formula in the summer of 1905, 

In the second place, we can now arrest the ascent of the balloons at 
the desired height. The bursting of the subsidiary balloon is no longer 
used on my ship for this purpose. It presents some irregularities, which 
however do not affect the validity of the results obtained, because the 
barometer indicates with precision the altitudes traversed. The sub- 
sidiary balloon is now detached from the system altogether at the desired 
height by the action of the electric current furnished by a small dry 
cell on a spring, which takes effect the moment the pen of the recording 
barometer touches a conductor set for the desired altitude. In order to 
be sure that the cell will act at the great altitudes where the cold is 
intense, it is surrounded by a calorific envelope, Avhich does not require 
to be very powerful, because the balloons, having a velocity of ascent of 
300 meters per minute, attain these heights very rapidly. We made 
the first application of this method in 1905. 

But the baUons-sonde are not the only apparatus which we have 
employed, along with kites, for investigating the phenomena of which 
the high atmosphere is the seat. In certain circumstances, for instance, 
when the sky is covered with clouds, or if the vicinity of inhospitable 
land makes it unlikely that balloons would be recovered, we have used 
captive balloons, sent to moderate heights. A ballon-sonde was fixed 
to the end of the very light wire of the kites, and when it had reached 
the greatest elevation which its ascensional force, diminished by the 
weight of the wire, permitted, a second balloon was allowed to slip up 


along the wire which, when it arrived near the first, gave the system a 
fresh charge of ascensional force and permitted it to rise higher. In 
this way we sent a group of three or four balloons, selected from those 
which had served as baUons-sonde. Having already been exposed to very 
great dilatation in the high atmosphere, it was not thought safe to use 
them for this purpose again. The recording instrument was attached 
to the last balloon, which could then ascend along the wire with a 
velocity sufficient to afford adequate ventilation for the thermometer. 
In this connection I may observe that the use of lallons-sonde 
offers very considerable advantages over that of the kites, by the 
exactness of the temperatures registered, which is due to the ventilation 
which the thermometer, placed in a sort of chimney, receives during the 
ascent. The ascent also is effected at a much higher speed. 

We have also launched pilot balloons, which sever all connection 
with those who dispatch them. They rise to prodigious heights and 
disappear for ever. They carry no instruments, but they, furnish 
valuable information regarding the direction and the violence of the 
aerial currents in the highest regions of the atmosphere. The following 
is the manner of their employment. 

The weather being clear and otherwise favourable, three observers, 
— forming a triple alliance — land on the shore of a continent or of an 
island. They take with them a small balloon inflated to a diameter of 
not more than one meter, and a theodolite, the telescope of which is 
especially powerful. The balloon may, however, be retained on board 
to be launched at a given signal from the shore. 

The theodolite used by Professor Hergesell, if established on solid 
ground, permits the observer to follow the balloon without losing sight 
of it, whilst his two assistants read and note, every half minute, the 
angles furnished. 

Finally, in 1906, we have attempted, and with success, a third 
method which allows a certain amount of exploration of the atmosphere, 
notwithstanding the presence of clouds, but with a clear horizon. It 
is then necessary to furnish the balloon with means capable only of 
taking it to such an altitude that it can regain the surface of the sea at 
a distance which does not exceed the limits of visibility. The ship is 
then stopped on the spot where the balloon was started, and attentive 
observers watch all directions in order to detect its return from above 
the clouds. The only experiment of this kind Avhich we have made, 
succeeded perfectly, and the balloon, which had reached a height of 
4800 meters on a day when the sky was completely covered by very 
low clouds, was detected and recovered at a distance of twelve 

Now, what results have been furnished by this new use of balloons 
over the sea ] It is, after the first exploration made with them in the 
region of the trade winds during the cruise of 1905, towards the high 
atmosphere of the arctic regions that I have carried on my investigations 
to increase these results. I therefore took measures, in concert with 
Professor Hergesell, so as to be able to make the best use of the oppor- 
tunities offered by my cruise of 1906. The balloons, the instruments, 

Terminal ice-face of a Spitsbergen glacier. 


Norwegian party's camp on Spitsbergen — Captain Isacliseu and 
Dr. Louet in their tent. 



Flying a kite. 


and the methods afforded a better guarantee of successful results than 
in 1905. 

But I was much hampered in the execution of one part of my 
programme by the persistent fogs over the sea to the westward of 
Spitsbergen, although in the bays and on land the Aveather was 
magnificent. Thus the dispatch of hallons-sonde which the pre- 
liminary experiments in the Mediterranean had rendered perfect of 
execution was stopped by this unsurmountable difficulty. Twice only 
was it possible to dispatch them. Nevertheless the information received 
is not without value, since our registering instruments have brought 
back curves from an altitude of 7500 meters in latitude 78° 55' N. 

In presence of continual fog at sea and the impossibility of launching 
usefully hallons-sonde in the neighbourhood of inhabited lands, we 
have frequently employed our hallons-sonde as captive balloons, as I 
have already explained. 

But our best results have been realised with pilot balloons : these 
instruments, which are small enough to be embraced by the arms of a 
man, have been followed with a special theodolite to the extraordinary 
altitude of 29,800 meters (97,700 ft.), if it is assumed that their velocity 
of ascent increased a little with the change of density of the atmosphere 
in the most elevated regions ; or at the very least to an altitude of 
25,000 meters (82,000 ft.). Further, the one which attained this height 
was, at the moment of its disappearance, at a distance of 80 kilometers 
(49i miles) from the observers. So remarkable a result is explained 
by the transparence of the atmosphere in the Arctic regions, a trans- 
parence which under other circumstances permitted us to follow distinctly 
on the snow of a glacier, at a distance of 40 kilometers, the movements 
of a party of four persons whom I had sent on a mission of exploration 
in the interior of Spitsbergen. 

The information furnished by the pilot balloons which carry no 
instrument because they are sacrificed, concerns questions of capital 
importance for meteorology ; the direction and the velocity of the upper 
currents. Now our pilot balloons of 1906 have taught us that there 
exists in the Arctic regions in the neighbourhood of the 80th parallel, 
at a height of about 13,600 meters, certain winds of 60 meters per 
second (132 miles per hour), a force for which we have no equivalent 
at the surface of the globe. Their direction was S. 68° W. 

The theodolite which we employ permits the two assistants of the 
one who observes the balloon while keeping it continually in the axis of 
the telescope to note at every moment its position in space, its altitude 
as well as its path, and the velocity of the currents which it traverses 
from its departure to its disappearance. 

We made thirty explorations of the high atmosphere in the arctic 
region of Spitsbergen in 1906, and twenty-six in the Atlantic ocean or in 
the Mediterranean in 1905; and the results of these cruises show that 
if the principal states of the Av^orld were willing to diminish a little the 
expense of international quarrels by submitting them to the judgment 
of a tribunal less costly than that of war, and if they preserved more of 
their resources for the veritable interests of humanity, it would be 


possible with powerful means, very soon to ascertain the laws of 
meteorology, the key of which seems to be found in the higher atmo- 
spheric regions. It remains only to add that Germany has just sent to 
the Atlantic and the Indian oceans a special ship, the Flanet, to con- 
tinue and extend my aerial explorations. On the other hand, Messrs. 
Teisserenc de Bort and Rotch have fitted out and used during 1905 and 
1906 a ship of their own for this purpose. 

I am also very pleased to mention the share taken in my three 
Arctic expeditions by one of your Scottish meteorologists who has become 
a distinguished oceanographer, Mr. W. S. Bruce, the leader of your fine 
Antarctic expedition of the Scotia, one of the most fruitful of those which 
have explored that region in the last few years, and one whose success 
is the more pleasing to your country because it was carried out at very 
moderate financial expense. It is to be hoped that the future will 
permit him to continue his scientific work. This year Mr. Bruce again 
accompanied nie with two assistants to the Arctic regions to undertake 
the exploration of a large island off Spitsbergen, Prince Charles Foreland. 
He carried this work out under weather conditions as unfavourable for 
the work of survey as for navigation. 


By Major A. St. H. Gibbons, F.R.G.S. 

{JFith Illustrations.) 

My first endeavour this evening will be to give a general description of 
natural Africa as it appears to the eye of the average observer travelling 
from the extreme south of the continent to Egypt. By recalling points 
and places of interest as they appeared to me, I shall hope to convey a 
tolerably accurate impression of each successive district traversed, the 
more obvious physical and climatic changes noticeable as the journey 
progresses, as well as any casual point of interest that may occur. Since 
impressions acquired, as well as impressions conveyed, are so largely 
subject to modification or exaggeration in proportion to the degree of 
imagination influencing all the temperaments concerned, I cannot hope to 
be universally successful in this respect, but where I fail the photographs 
you will be shown will to some extent have a corrective influence. On 
arrival in Egypt we will pass on to a discussion on the British Colonies 
and Protectorates of Africa, most of which lie on the route we follow. 

The Cape Peninsula, with its congenial climate, productive soil, and 
picturesque scenery, takes a high place amongst the more favoured spots 
of this world. The visitor driving through the suburbs cannot fail to 
be impressed by the noble avenues of oaks, which in height at least 
would dwarf their sires of Europe if placed side by side with them, or 
by the extensive plantations of firs and pines from many parts of the 
world which grace the slopes of Table Mountain, a perfecting touch 

1 An Address delivered before the Society in Edinburgh on December 12, 1906. 

Scc_itti>l] |iari\ lt':\.vmg Frincesse A/(i:v lui I'liuce Lli.uka i>Muiai..i. 

Scuttisli Assistant!^. Nuiwei-'iim Assistciuts. 

A. Fuhrmeister. A. Fabrienta. L. Tinavre. H.S.H. Lieut. Staxeiuii. 

Captaiu Dr. Richard. Dr. Portier. Dr. Loiiet. Capt. The Prince AV. S. F.ruce. t'aiit. Cavr. 

Bouriie. Prof. Hergesell. Isachsen. of Monaco. 


added by mau, but unthought of by nature when she created one of the 
grandest and most beautiful monuments of scenery to be found all the 
world over. The indigenous tree-growth of the Peninsula is both 
sparse and scrubby, but it is a remarkable fact that when replaced by 
imported stock these thrive much more luxuriantly than in their native 
soil. The older trees, especially the oaks, owe their existence to the 
Dutch governments of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. With 
admirable forethought an "arbor day" was instituted, on successive 
anniversaries of which each colonist was by law required to plant at 
least one tree for himself and one for each member of his family. 

Both soil and climate are particularly well adapted to the cultivation 
of the grape. The government takes a leading interest in the wine 
industry, and at Constautia, formerly the official seat of the Dutch 
governors, the grape is produced and wine made under the best expert 
supervision. If all wine grown at the Cape was up to the government 
sample, the attempt made to introduce Cape wines into England a few 
years ago would not have failed. Fruit has been grown for many 
generations, but it was not until the early nineties that high-class fruit 
was introduced. Pears and stone fruits of the very best quality are now 
being successfully cultivated in ever-increasing quantities. 

Leaving Cape Town by rail, a few hours introduces the traveller to 
the bold, rugged scenery of the Hex River Mountains. These rise in 
what appears to be a long range extending out of view to east and west. 
In reality these mountains, which are about 4000 feet in altitude, form 
the escarpment of the great plateau which stretches northwards through 
the heart of the continent to within a short march of the Victoria Nile, 
where it falls away to the level of the Upper Nile basin in two escarp- 
ments. The Hex River Mountains, as one would expect, separate two 
very different climates. To the south rains fall practically in the winter 
months only. At this season on the plateau a bright, clear sky, almost 
without a cloud, is the invariable rule. In June and July night frosts 
are severe, and I have known snow to lie in some of the higher altitudes 
for several days. In September — the early spring — the wet season is 
heralded by occasional heavy thunderstorms, which increase in frequency 
as the summer progresses. As far as the neighbourhood of the Orange 
River this plateau land is remarkable for the almost total absence of 
grass, but a very useful substitute exists in the growth of the little 
karroo bush, a small plant not unlike some heathers in appearance, which 
rivals the best sheep pastures in the world. Barren and monotonous to 
the eye as the karroo veldt is throughout the winter months, it responds 
to the first September rains with remarkable suddenness, when its young 
green shoots, mingling with many-coloured wildflowers, convert it into a 
great natural carpet of delicate tints. 

In Griqualand West and Bechuanaland proper the Karroo is replaced 
by undulating grass downs, and here sheep give place to cattle. Until 
three miles beyond Mafeking scarce anything arboreal more shady or 
imposing than our own gooseberry bush is to be seen. At one time 
stunted acacias were not uncommon between Vryburg and Kimberley, 
but these rapidly disappeared before the demand for wood in the early 


life of the latter town. From this point, however, forest in one form or 
another is general, and plain land quite the exception, to within a short 
distance of Khartum. In Bechuanaland the soil is largely of a red 
laterite. This covers a far greater area of the plateau land of Africa 
than all other soils. In South Africa it is patchy, as it is north of the 
Zambezi until within a couple of degrees of the Congo-Zambezi water- 
shed, from which point it is general right throughout the high ground of 
the Congo Free State, British and German East Africa, as well as 
Uganda. The savannah forest of the Bechuanaland Protectorate is 
mainly composed of acacias of different varieties, but in the north, where 
the red soil gives place to a yellow loam, as also in the yellov/ sand of 
the Kalahari, considerable patches of mopani are encountered. This 
tree, the leaves of which when viewed from a short distance remind one 
of the English beech, and which like the beech retains many dried leaves 
after the green shoots have burst, is a hard, useful wood, the red heart 
of which is rendered especially valuable on account of its being imper- 
vious to the ravages of the white ant. The Bechuanaland Protectorate 
is the poorest province of British Africa through which my wanderings 
have led me. It is true that cattle do well in certain districts, but even 
then a wide acreage is necessary to support a small herd. The rainfall 
is small and uncertain, and there is evidence that it is less than it was 
twenty-five years ago. Droughts are of frequent occurrence. 

'Next we enter the Kalahari Desert. Though the rainfall is even 
less than in the Protectorate, averaging only six or seven inches, the 
Kalahari is misnamed a desert. The sandy undulations are covered 
with savannah forest and a fair admixture of good cattle pasture. 
" "Wilderness " is a more appropriate descriptive term in this case, and 
such it will remain until the population of South Africa has so far 
increased as to extend the margin of cultivation to such a country as 
this, where the absence of surface water can only be made good by tap- 
ping the hidden reservoirs below ground. So porous is the sandy soil of 
this great wilderness, that so great a river as the Okovango, which in 
19° S. lat. is a strong, deep stream two or three hundred yards wide, and 
at flood time inundates a valley 20 miles broad with an average of c^uite 
3 feet of water, is 60 miles further little more than a trickling stream, 
and in the dry season disappears altogether. That this was not always 
so is proved by the existence of beds leading to Lake Ngami which 
could not have been created under present conditions. The rivers 
which fed the lake when Livingstone discovered it could not have been 
larger before entering the sand area than they are to-day. Yet then 
Ngami was a wide stretch of water extending beyond view, while ten 
years ago it was but a small reed swamp. It is said that the lake within 
the last few years has shown signs of refilling. The eastern confines of 
the Kalahari and the Avestern boundary of Matabeleland are conterminous, 
and here the conditions alter for the better, the country becoming for 
the most part undulating, well-watered plateau. More striking, however, 
is the change experienced on crossing the Zambezi, the watershed of 
which, lying only a few miles south of the river, marks the northern 
limit of the Kalahari. After toiling for five weeks through deep sand. 



under conditions which make a twelve-mile day's journey a most satis- 
factory performance, it can be imagined with what feelings of exhilaration 
the eyes first rest on that noble stream of clear, deep water. Here we 
are on the threshold of Central Africa, and enter a sub- tropical country 
differing from South Africa in many of its characteristics. The natives 
are quite distinct, vegetation has undergone a considerable change, and 
the shadeless, thorny acacia is replaced by comely trees from 25 to 
40 feet high, according to the district in which they grow. The 
northern Zambezi's affluents, and even their small tributaries in the 
upper river basin, i.e, those entering above the Victoria Falls, unlike 
those in South Africa, carry water throughout the year. The Zambezi 
also forms a limit to the habitat of several species of game. The giraffe, 
the ostrich, the tsessebe, the gemsbuck, the South African waterbuck, and 
the red hartebeest, though found in some cases in large numbers near 
the right bank, are unknown on the left. On the other hand Crawshay's 
waterbuck and Lichenstein's hartebeest are only found beyond the 
Zambezi, while the Pookoo, Lechwe, and Situtunga, being river animals 
and consequently not limited by water boundaries, are found on the 
western tributaries, and have followed the Okovango to Lake Ngami. 
These are very common to the north and east of the river, and essentially 
belong to that country. The soil of the Upper Zambezi basin is, I 
believe, peculiar to itself. It is a white, large-grained sand, which, when 
washed clear of alluvium, is snowlike in apjiearance. Everlasting 
undulations of it extend from about 17'' 30' to 12° S. lat., and, roughly 
speaking, from the western water-parting of the Kafue system to beyond 
the Kwito. This prac- 
tically embraces the 
whole of the Upper 
Zambezi basin, lying 
above SOOOandbelow 
4000 feet in altitude, 
as well as that of the 
Okovango, which, on 
evidence I published 
five years ago, seems 
to have been part of 
the Zambezi system 
not many centuries 
past. Just as the 
Barotse Plain, which 
undoubtedly was 
once the basin of 
a large lake, was 

drained dry by the erosive action of its water on the confining 
hills below the Gonye Falls, so is there evidence that at a still earlier 
period the whole of this white sand area was the site of a great freshwater 
inland sea, until centuries of erosion had gradually eaten a way through 
the mountainous region extending for over 100 miles eastwards from the 
Victoria Falls, and in doing so created the series of narrow rocky gorges 

Fig. 1. — The L'uuslaacc, the first steamer placed ou the Zambezi 
between the Kebrabasa Rapids and the Victoria Falls. 


through which the river passes to-day. The Batoka Plateau on the 
east, and the southern slopes on the long ridge which divides the Congo 
and Zambezi systems, is the commencement of the great northern 
expanse of red loam alluded to above. From the west of the line of the 
great mountain region stretching from Lake Mweru to Lake Albert until 
the dense forests in the centre of the Congo basin are reached, the 
general character of the vegetation varies but little from that of Barotse- 
land. The same undulating ground continues, and the same class of tree 
is found on all sides. The journey northwards from Mweru to Tangan- 
yika, and thence through Kivu, Albert Edward, and Victoria to Albert, 
is particularly interesting. Of these lakes, three at least are victims of 
the same gradual erosive action which in centuries gone by deprived the 
Zambezi of its great lakes. Before the narrow Luapula outlet from 
Lake Mweru had commenced to eat away the rocks at the base of the 
valley through which it flows, the lake must have been at least four 
times its present area, and at a still earlier period was probably one 
with Lake Bengueulu. On Tanganyika the palm-tree to which, accord- 
ing to native report, Livingstone tied his boat on his journey up the 
lake, now stands nearly a quarter of a mile from the shore, in the gardens of 
the Jesuit Mission Station at M'pala, and, so far as I could judge, 25 feet 
above water-level. Tiiis gives an annual lowering of 10 inches in the 
lake surface. The Lukugu outlet, through which I subsequently waded 
knee-deep, passes over a sand-bar, beyond which there is a steep decline, 
so we may expect the same lowering process to continue until the bed- 
rock is reached. Kivu, by thousands of years the youngest of all these 
lakes, seems to have remained much the same in this respect as on the 
day when Avater first filled the great basin erected by one of the earth's 
mightiest upheavals. On the other hand Albert Edward, where the 
Semliki leaves it, has been subject to an influence similar to that exerted 
on Mweru. In general appearance each lake has its charm, and each is 
in character distinct from the rest. Mweru leaves on the mind an 
impression of peace. The southern shores are low-lying and reed-girt, 
but gradually these give place to wooded undulations, and later to larger 
hills sloping to the water's edge. The north, like the south, lies low, 
but is more gravelly and consequently less swampy. " Grand " is the 
word that best describes Tanganyika, with its great mountain ranges 
rising to many thousand feet skywards. Kivu is perhaps the gem of all, 
with a water surface 4900 feet above the sf a-level ; its serrated shores, as 
well as those of the large island of Kwijwi, rise in steep slopes, which on 
the mainland are finally merged in the great mountains behind. The 
land is rich and open, the air fresh and bracing. It is said that this 
district contains no malarial microbes, and certainly the water harbours 
neither hippopotami nor crocodile. It is the one large piece of African 
water into which one can plunge with perfect equanimity. 

Albert Edward has a certain charm of its own. Though the 
approach from the south into the reed-begirt swamps that bound the 
lake gives the traveller an unfavourable first impression, as these un- 
congenial surroundings are replaced by the mountainous Avails of the 
north and west and the w^ooded undulations of the north-east, his earlier 


disappointment vanishes. The water of the lake is slightly brackish 
and of a yellowish tinge, but is not undrinkable. The southern ex- 
tremity forms a rendezvous for innumerable hippopotami, which find an 
ideal feeding ground close by. Lake Albert, extending as it does from 
the base of the Ruwenzori Range — the Mountains of the Moon — and 
bordering the Torn and Unyoro plateau, which falls from over 4000 to 
2400 feet into the lake itself, is a noble and Avell-favoured stretch of 
water. Compared with Tanganyika it might be said that Lake Albert 
is more picturesque than grand. 

Lastly we have Lake Victoria, which, though not so long as Tan- 
ganyika, has a greater superficial area, and by virtue of its more basin- 
like shape is the only one of the six lakes referred to which can be 
accurately described as an inland sea. On Victoria alone is it possible 
to be in such a position as to be quite out of sight of land even on a 
clear day. The shores of the lake, with its innumerable bays, trees 
growing to the water's edge, and an undulating background, are very 
beautiful in places and are sometimes lashed by sealike waves, a charac- 
teristic which Victoria shares with Tanganyika, as I once learned very 
nearly at the cost of my life. 

From Nyasa there is, as is well known, a valley extending along the 
line of the great lakes. As one passes northwards there is daily evidence 
in both soil and other physical features of the volcanic origin of this 
great lake district, and between Tanganyika and Albert Edward this is 
particularly evident, especially to the north of Kivu, where the lava from 
a recent eruption of one of the Umfumbira mountains still lies black and 
bare over what within the memory of living natives was inhabited forest- 
land. The tree-growth between Tanganyika and Kivu is stunted and 
scant. In the bed of the valley the thorny shadeless acacia and the stiff 
symmetrical euphorbia are alone seen, while to the north of Kivu the 
valley is practically treeless until within a few miles of Lake Albert 
Edward a savannah, which smacks of South Africa, is encountered. The 
downs round Kivu and on the plateau of Torn are covered with elephant 
grass which stands far above the height of man, and through which 
progress would be almost impossible were it not for cleared paths. 
Unyoro, the district which lies in the angle formed by the eastern banks 
of Lake Albert and the Victoria Nile, is identical in character with the 
Bechuanaland Protectorate, as is the neighbourhood of the Upper Nile 
beyond the swamps of that pestilential and unprepossessing section of 
the great river which lower down is so profoundly interesting and 
useful. The same class of vegetation reaches to within a feAv miles of 
Khartum, Avhere it is replaced by the grassless dry desert of Egypt. 
Not only are these northern latitudes similar to the south, although 
separated by 2000 miles of very different country, but there is also a 
striking resemblance between much of the fauna of these two extremities 
of the continent. The Giraffe, whose habitat in the south is limited to 
the Zambezi, once more appears here, as does the Secretary Bird. In 
the north and south the Ostrich is identical, though a different species 
appears in the intermediate area. Except in colour the red hartebeest of 
Khama's country closely resembles Jackson's hartebeest of Unyoro and 


neif^hbourhood, and the White Rhinoceros (which until I secured his 
counterpart on the Nile six years ago, was not known north of the 
Zambezi) apparently does not exist in the intermediate area. Many of 
the smaller birds seemed to take my mind back to South Africa, though, 
as I shot nothing not required for food, I can only record this fact 
as an impression. 

Such in the main is a general summary of impressions which occur 
to the ordinary observer taking a walk from one end of Africa to the 
other. Up to 1890, and even later, his observations would have been 
limited to the Africa described — the Africa of all past ages — for where 
his footsteps were not implanted on absolutely unexplored territory, such 
Europeans as had preceded him were occasional wanderers like himself 
who had come and gone away again. 

Xow — only sixteen years later — how changed is the whole aspect of 
the Continent ! This grand sanctuary of nature is being rapidly trans- 
formed. European ideas, experiments, and methods are permeating the 
most remote regions. In Europe one has heard much cant on the lines 
of the substitution for barbarism of the blessings of civilisation. In 
Africa the curses of our vaunted social progress seem in places to loom 
so large as to almost obscure its loftier attributes. In pondering over 
the respect and simple hospitality of which one was wont to be the 
recipient at the hands of the inhabitants of the most inaccessible districts 

especially those that had never previously known a European — I have 

wondered what those natives now think of the white man and his 
methods ! 

But amidst all this confusion of ideas my mind reverts with pride to 
the recollection of how on more than one occasion foes became friends 
on discovering my British nationality — for from Britishers all natives 
expect and usually obtain fair play. 

To the same cause do I attribute the comparative ease with which I 
have been able to cover long distances — occasionally through districts 
by no means peaceably inclined towards Europeans generally. Since 
the days of the great pioneer of modern African exploration, of whom 
Scotsmen are so justly proud, I believe I may claim to be the first 
traveller who has never had an askari or armed native in his employ. 
My caravans have seldom exceeded tw^euty in number, and on no single 
ni»ht has a watch been kept over my camp ; and yet in some countries 
through which I have passed the European officials will not leave their 
stations without armed escort. 

Yet another memory rises before me. Early in 1900 I entered 
TJcranda after nearly two years of daily marching. Since quitting British 
territory in the south I had grown so accustomed to the sight of women 
and children flying on my approach, that the sense of security evinced 
by the natives of the Protectorate, and the respectful manner in which 
both sexes stood aside and saluted as I passed on, were especially 
gratifying to my British pride. 

Such experiences suggest, if they do not prove, that no matter how 
disappointing the existing process of civilising Africa may be, our own 
system — and what is still more important, the spirit in Avhich effect is 


given to it — is at least sympathetically considerate of the rights and 
interests of the weaker races. 

Of African Crown Colonies and Protectorates, i.e. of British posses- 
sions in the earlier stages of development — there are three great groups 
— west, east, and south central. With the exception of very small 
possessions on the West Coast; a flimsy Foreign Oflice Protectorate over 
part of Somaliland proclaimed in 1884; and the granting at the end of 
1888 of a Royal Charter affecting certain territories in East Africa 
leased from the Sultan of Zanzibar, the whole of this new soil, amounting 
in the aggregate to over 2,000,000 square miles, has been broken since 
1890. By the annexation in 1902 of the Transvaal and Orange River 
Colonies a further 167,000 square miles fell under British control. 

Though my travels have given me some experience of every other 
colony in British Africa, they have never led me into the West Coast 
group. I will therefore content myself here by merely giving one or 
two historical and economic facts bearing on their prospects as a whole. 

The West African Colonies cannot, as is well known, be accurately 
described as health resorts, though the new acquisitions, lying as they 
do well back from the coastline, are by no means as unhealthy as the 
term " West Coast " implies. In places the land rises to eight or nine 
hundred feet above the sea-level, which though far below the altitude 
necessary to convert the tropics into a climate suitable for European 
colonisation in the sense of permanent settlement under conditions of 
family life, is none the less sufliciently high to ensure the existence of 
well-drained and open sites for government and other stations. 

The first active attempt made by England to establish a footing in 
Africa took place as early as the year 1618, when English merchants, 
having failed to open the Gambia to their trade, landed on the Gold 
Coast and there erected a fort. This was the first of several forts and 
trading stations and of a growing trade. A trading company obtained 
a charter in 1662, to be succeeded ten years later by the Royal African 
Company, and this in 1750 gave place to the African Company of 
Merchants, which by Act of Parliament obtained more extended rights. 
In 1S21 the settlements of the Gold Coast were taken over by the 
Crown and placed under the administration of Sierra Leone. In 187-4 
the Crown Colony of the Gold Coast Avas constituted as a separate 
administration. Until 1872 the Dutch retained certain territorial and 
trading rights, but were bought out in that year, the Dutch having with- 
drawn twenty-two years earlier. 

In Gambia the first English fort was built on an island in the 
estuary of that river in 1686. The subsequent century was dis- 
tinguished by a keen commercial struggle between the Portuguese, the 
French, and ourselves, and it was not until 1783 that, by the Treaty of 
Versailles, British sovereignty was secured over the islands in the 
estuary and a small mileage on the mainland. In the earlier part of 
the seventeenth century the Gold Coast and Gambia derived their chief 
commercial importance as slave-collecting depots from which the planta- 
tions of America and the West Indies were largely supplied. With the 
crusade of Wilberforce a generous reaction in feeling took possession of 




the people of these islands, and many thousands of slaves were liberated. 
In 1787 Sierra Leone was acquired by arrangement with native chiefs 
for the express purpose of supplying a free home on their native con- 
tinent for the very slaves we had been so active until recently in 
forcibly deporting across the seas. The result is that Sierra Leone has 
become a polyglot little black colony, of which about 45,000 of the 
inhabitants are descended from liberated slaves gathered from diflPerent 
parts of the continent, as against 30,000 local natives. 

Among these earlier colonies we must also include Lagos, which 
lies between Southern Nigeria and French territory. These, with small in- 
terests in the neighbourhood of the Lower Niger, represent British terri- 
torial rights as inherited from earlier generations of Englishmen. For 
a century our territorial possessions on the coast had ranged between 
10,000 to 15,000 square miles, and it was not until a very few years ago 
that we commenced to realise that, if we did not look after our interests 
with intelligence and activity, our prosperous little West Coast Colonies 
would be deprived of the free exercise of trade with the interior. Even 
then, as in so many parallel cases, the situation was not to be saved by 
the elected representatives of the nation, but by the individual and 
collective foresight of a chartered company under the direction of great 
administrative ability. Commercially so successful, and politically so 
active was the Royal Niger Company under tlie direction of Sir George 
T. Goldie, that when the government bought out the company in 1900 
the direct effect of thirteen years' work was that upwards of 300,000 
square miles had been acquired for the Empire, and scope for future 
prosperity was assured. The material position of these colonies is 
most satisfactory, for, with the exception of the newly acquired 
territories of Northern Nigeria, each colony not only pays its own way, 
but steadily improves its position from year to year. Southern Nigeria, 
formerly the heart of the Royal Niger Company, already heads the list, 
partly no doubt owing to the business-like organisation inherited from 
the Company, and partly through having the run in Northern Nigeria 
of an extensive British Hinterland. Southern Nigeria was this year 
wisely amalgamated with Lagos for administrative purposes. 

The total revenue of all these colonies was : — 

In 1900 . 
In 1904 . 
Increase of 

Increase of 

Increase of 

Total Imports. 

. 5,790,088 
. 1,531,611 

ToTAi- Exports. 

. 5,067,228 
. 1,198,516 

. £1,143,473 



Imports from 
United Kingdom, 

. £3,070,021 

. 5,120,589 


Exports to 
United Kingdom. 

. £1,778,727 

. 2,449,169 



Among the produce exported from the coast are rubber, beeswax, 
palm oil and kernels, gold, ivory, skins, ginger, gum-copal and ebony. 

Just as the Royal Charter in 1887 intrusted the Eoyal Niger 
Company with the exercise of sovereign rights with results so satisfactory 
both from an Imperial and commercial standpoint, so in the following 
year a charter granted to Sir William Mackinnonand his co-directors was 
destined to increase the area of the British Empire by a further million 
of square miles, of which a large portion is capable of useful economic 
development. The Imperial British East African Company acquired its 
first territorial rights by lease from the Sultan of Zanzibar, and later 
supplemented these by means of treaties with native chiefs in the 
interior. The most important inland territories affected was the native 
kingdom of Uganda, in which the work of administration commenced 
in 1890. 

Unfortunately the Company was not a commercial success. In 1893 
the Imperial Government took over the administration of Uganda, to 
which were added in 1894-95 the districts of Unyoro, Usoga, Nandi and 
Kavirondo. In 1895 the remainder of the Company's territory was 
placed under the control of the Foreign Office, this latter to be 
administered by the Zanzibar Consul-General as Commissioner of what 
had now become the British East Africa Protectorate, the former under 
a separate Commissioner being already known as the Uganda Pro- 
tectorate. In 1902 Naivasha and Kisumu, the latter of which includes 
the Nandi country, were transferred to the East African administration. 

Thus the British East African Company died in its infancy, but like 
the proverbial grain of seed wheat its short existence will, I feel sure, 
prove to have been the germ of a great economic development, and it 
certainly was the direct means of opening out to future British settle- 
ment one of the healthiest and most interesting plateau-lands of the 
world. When I visited East Africa two years ago, I confess I was not 
impressed by the progress so promising a country had made during the 
first fifteen years of its existence under British administration, whereas in 
Uganda at the commencement of 1900 the net result of a decade of 
Foreign Office rule seemed to be the introduction into the country of a 
few officials and missionaries, who appeared to have played their part 
with every credit to themselves as organisers in the one case and 
educators in the other (for the bearing and conduct of the natives were 
such as are only to be found under administrations conducted on high 
principles). But trade and industry, w^iich are the raison cTetre of 
the acquirement of colonial possessions, were as a principle — and I 
contend as a had principle — not only discouraged, but practically pro- 
hibited so far as British settlers were concerned. The effect of this was 
that necessary trade was in the hands of a few Indians, and enterprising 
Germans domiciled in German East Africa, while the Englishman who 
wished to acquire interests in the Protectorate, even when his claims 
were locally supported, was told that the Foreign Office did n( t con- 
sider that the country was yet ripe for settlement. To one whose 
earliest experience had fallen in the south the policy thus proclaimed 
seemed a strange one indeed, for surely from the very moment property 



and the person can be declared safe, the trader and settler should be 
encouraged, and the government should at once turn its active attention 
towards the development of trade routes and cheap lines of communica- 
tion. Uganda was booming in those days under the direction of a 
progressive and able administrator — Sir Harry Johnston, one of your 
gold-medallists. When a country is what is termed " before the public " 
jiioneer settlers are always forthcoming. Uganda in due course fell 
asleep under more placid auspices, and still sleeps. An opportunity was 
lost. There is no longer any manifest desire among pioneer settlers to 
try their luck in Uganda. They go elsewhere. 

In 1892 a preliminary survey for a railway to connect Mombasa 
with Lake Victoria was commenced, the government having wisely 
recognised the strategic importance of such a railway in view of certain 

probable eventualities 
connected with the 
Dervish occupation of 
the Upper Nile spread- 
ing as it did to the 
very borders of the 
Uganda Protectorate. 
As a matter of course 
the economic advantages 
of such a line to the 
Protectorate through 
which it passed must 
have strengthened the 
government in coming 
to a decision in the 
matter. Persistent op- 
position to the scheme 
was offered, but for- 
a substantial majority 
of the scheme. Thus 

Fig. 2.— Mediteval Portuguese Fort at Mombasa. 

tunately the whole of the Opposition and 
of the party then in power were in favour 
the accession to power in July 1895 of Lord Salisbury's government 
in no way interfered with the project, and at the end of that year 
the first rail was laid. It was not, however, till six years later 
that the first engine made the journey from Mombasa to the lake. 
The cost of the railwaj^— £6,000,000— has been strongly criticised, 
and contracting engineers have asserted that they could have com- 
pleted the line in half the time, and at little more than half the 
cost. This may or may not be the case, but experience in South 
Africa would seem to point to the conclusion that the railway 
contractor limited to time is more expeditious in his methods than the 
appointed government official on an annual salary ; and in railway work 
more than in most other departments of industry the saying "Time is 
money " has its full significance. Though most of the country traversed 
by these 584 miles of rail admits of an easy gradient and rapid work, 
two great physical obstacles had to be faced. The Straits separating the 
island of Mombasa from the mainland necessitated the construction of a 


bridge 1732 feet in length; also the Great Kift Valley had to be 
traversed. From the highest altitude — about 7400 feet — at the western 
face of the Kikuyu plateau the drop is 1440 ft. (of which 1000 ft. is 
very abrupt) in 85 miles, while the summit of the Man escarpment, on 
the further confines of the valley, is nearly 100 feet higher. It is 
satisfactory to know that the railway has already, in spite of its great 
cost, justified its existence, for not only was it paying its own working 
expenses five years after being open to traffic, but it has been the means 
of attracting to its precincts those who are destined to form the basis of 
a considerable colonial community. With a view to giving a general 
impression of the country through which this railway passes in parti- 
cular, and of that part of British East Africa already under control in 
general, I do not think I can do better than reproduce a short extract 
from a paper I read in January 1906 before the Royal Geogx'aphical 

Leaving the coast late in the afternoon of one day, daylight on the next 
" found us some 200 miles from Mombasa, and at an altitude of about 3000 
feet above the sea-level. To the explorer, sportsman or naturalist, this 
journey along the Uganda Railway is of supreme interest. The physical 
features of the country are continually changing — savannah, scrub, and 
open plain are passed in turn ; undulating downs and wide flats succeed 
one another as the train slowly climbs to Nairobi at an altitude of 
5450 feet — an average gradient from the coast of 20 feet in the mile. 
The scenery throughout is eminently African. In spite of its varying 
characteristics I saw nothing new to me, merely so many samples of 
what I had passed through in other parts of the continent, though for 
the most part these are samples of the best. At one time or another 
one could imagine oneself on the grass downs or plains of Griqualand 
West or the Transvaal, in the acacia scrub of the Bechuanaland Pro- 
tectorate or Unyoro, or among the brighter savannahs of Barotseland and 

"During the latter part of the journey game is never out of sight. 
The zebra, the hartebeest. Grant's gazelle and Thomson's gazelle are 
numerous, while waterbuck, wildebeest, ostrich, palla, and the smaller 
antelopes are fairly common. Before the rinderpest swept the Upper 
Zambezi basin in 1896, Barotseland probably equalled East Africa in 
quantity and was richer in variety. Since those days I have never seen 
anything to equal the sight which now is within reach of any one 
travelling to Nairobi by rail. One fact was particularly noticeable when 
we made the journey. The Athi plains were bereft of everything 
green — every blade of grass. It transpired that a few days earlier 
myriads of caterpillars had made their appearance in a single night, and 
extending for miles to right and left, these writhed themselves onwards 
in a living mass so dense as to obscure the very earth. So thick were 
they that their crushed bodies on the rails denied the flywheels of the 
up-country engines their grip, and the trains were continually brought 
to a standstill, and, in fact, were only set in motion again by a frequent 
application of sand to the rails. . . . The journey to Nakuru — the 
station in the bed of the Rift Valley ... is remarkable for the 


magnificence of the view as seen from the train during its descent from 
the Kilcuyu escarpment into the Eift Valley. The train winds its way 
through a cutting in dense primaeval forest. Through the clearing and 
from occasional open patches, a most comprehensive view is obtained of 
the red-brown valley 1500 feet below, and of the purple hills behind, 
which culminate in the blue outline of the Mau escarpment. One looks 
down on the summits of considerable hills, and can almost see into the 
crater of the extinct volcano Longonot." One of the great features of 
the western provinces of British East Africa is the magnificent plateau 
land which rises on either side of the Rift Valley to altitudes reaching 
to 8500 feet above sea-level. These plateaus are largely made up of 
open grass downs between 6500 and 7500 feet, while below 6500 — 
and above where the ground is stony — the type of small savannah found 
in many parts of Africa prevails. The downs supply first-class cattle 
pasture, capable of supporting immense herds. The prime condition of 
the cattle and donkeys fed on it gives practical proof of its high quality. 
On the highest levels, i.e. between 7500 and 8500, there exist extensive 
belts and patches of magnificent virgin forest. Mighty trees rising to 
nearly 200 feet are matted together with jungle so dense as to make 
progress among them very slow and tedious. So dense is the matted 
undergrowth of ropelike creepers, giant thistles and other entanglements 
which dispute every step, that progress is impossible Avithout the help 
of much cutting and slashing. The forest edge is so well defined that 
it is impossible to say whether yards or miles separate the traveller 
from the plains beyond. So easy is concealment from the eye of man 
that game is rarely seen or even heard, and yet the foot spoor bears 
evidence of its existence. The giant bushbuck or bongo, standing over 
4 feet 6 inches at the shoulders, has never yet been so much as seen by 
European eyes, and would be entirely unknown Avere it not for the 
existence of something less than half-a-dozen skins and horns taken in 
pitfalls by natives. The case of the bongo is in fact identical with that 
of the okapi, known to exist under similar conditions a few hundred 
miles further west. A skeleton, said to be that of a giant pig standing 
as high as an ox, has been found in one of these forests. However, 
without appearing to be incredulous, I think we may wait for more 
definite evidence before giving him a name. Nevertheless, that many 
facts of undiscovered interest lurk within the sunless gloom of these 
great relics of centuries long since passed is not to be doubted. 

Among the trees there is to be found a sprinkling of first-class 
timbers, and of course, as usual, a still larger proportion of wood of 
inferior quality. The podocarpus and juniper are well represented, but 
perhaps the most striking of all is a giant cedar which towers upwards 
in a thick straight stem. The industrialisation of these forests has 
already commenced, and in the future this trafiic in timber should 
become a great commercial asset when once the railway management 
have accepted the principle that cheap rates to the coast not only fill 
trucks which would otherwise return empty, but, in offering substantial 
encouragement to the settler and thereby fostering enterprise, increase 
the up-country traffic also. From an agricultural standpoint these high 



plateaus, though admirable for stock-rearing purposes, do not offer as 
good prospects as do the five to six thousand feet levels which are not 
subject to the night frosts and high winds of the invigorating uplands. 
Potatoes are grown with such success that already considerable con- 
signments have been shipped to South Africa. Tree-growth is abnormally- 
rapid, and agriculture generally should play a most important part 
in the development both of East Africa and Uganda. A certain 
amount of ivory and rubber finds its way to the coast, and experiments 
are being made in the cultivation of cotton, but as yet with no very 
definite results. The revenue is principally derived from customs, 
duties and game licences, and does not half cover the expenditure. 
The imports in 1900 stood at £193,438 as against £741,785 in 
1904 — a very substantial increase of £548,347. The exports in 1900 
were £113,205 ; in 1904 they had rather more than doubled this figure. 
Uganda may be said to be in a stagnant condition mainly owing to the 
absence of cheap lines of communication. The Nile is the natural 
outlet to Uganda, and until — at a small cost as compared with the great 
interests involved — the one bar to free navigation is removed, Uganda 
cannot progress satisfactorily. 

Twenty years ago it transpired that Great Britain was in imminent 
danger of becoming seriously embarrassed in South Africa. Information, 
said to be supported by more than circumstantial evidence, came to the 
notice of the Cape Government to the effect that Germany was pre- 
paring to expand her Damaraland Colony eastwards as far as the 
Transvaal border. This accomplished, the partition of the country 
northwards between Boer and Teuton would be an easy matter. Those 
who recollect the history of the German acquisition of Damaraland — 
a country at the time considered the natural hinterland of the Walfisch 
Bay settlement — will not marvel that such a design should have been 
fostered with quite a reasonable hope of success; and after all said and 
done we had less claim to Khama's country, contiguous as it was to the 
Boer Republic, than to the aforesaid hinterland. Fortunately for the 
material and political prospects 
of British South Africa there 
sprang to the front one of those 
powerful personalities which at 
rare intervals flutter as it were 
across a page of history, accom- 
plish the purpose for which they 
seem to have been created, then 
returning whence they came, leave 
behind them an influence which 
moulds the course of history for 
generations yet unborn. To specu- 
late on the course events may take 
in South Africa in the light 
of the extraordinary political 
situation recently created would be to play with hypothetical uncer- 
tainties, but what man not utterly devoid of the virtue of patriotism 

Fig. 3. — Pemba Station on the African Trans- 
continental Railway, NW. Rhodesia. 


can ponder with equanimity on the course destiny was following in the 
eiglities had it not been arrested and remoulded by the strong hand 
and courageous policy of the late Cecil J. Rhodes, 

In February 1888 the first sign of coming events showed itself in the 
conclusion of a treaty between Great Britain and Lobengula, which 
placed Matabelelaud within the sphere of British influence. The Mata- 
bele Chief by this instrument undertook to refrain from entering into 
any correspondence or treaty with any state or power other than 

In October of the same year, Mr. Rudd, on behalf of a syndicate 
which included Mr. Rhodes and Mr. Beit, obtained a concession of 
mineral rights over the whole of Lobengula's dominions, in exchange 
for a monthly payment of £100 and 1000 Martini-Henry rifles. 

Shortly afterwards a second expedition arrived at Bulawayo on a 
similar errand. It was led by Mr. E. A. Maund on behalf of "The 
Exploring Company, Limited," of which Mr. George Cawston and Lord 
Gifford were the moving spirits. Though anticipated in its designs, 
the latter group successfully entered into negotiations with their more 
fortunate competitors, which led to an agreement to co-operate on the 
basis of a quarter-interest. This amalgamation of interests was suffi- 
ciently powerful to command consideration both at home and in South 

A year later a Royal Charter, bearing the date of October 29, 1889, 
was granted conferring on what now became the British South Africa 
Chartered Company administrative and other functions in the country 
concerned. The first board was presided over by the Duke of Abercorn, 
who has retained the position ever since, and contained, among other 
well-known noblemen and gentlemen, Mr. Cecil Rhodes as managing 
director. Under the influence of such a man an active and progressive 
policy was assured to the new enterprise, but the rapidity of the first 
steps towards the consummation of the ideal in view opened the eyes of 
the most sanguine. At the time the railway terminus stood at Kimberley, 
and that of the telegraph at Mafeking. Within six months a special 
force of military police had not merely been recruited, organised and 
equipped, but with all necessary wagon transport had marched 650 
miles from Kimberley and were on duty at Macloutsi, which had been 
selected as a base of operations. On July 5th the first troop moved 
northwards as escort to the pioneer force. At Tuli River, on the 
borders of Mashonaland, a fort was constructed and garrisoned by one 
troop, and on the arrival of two further troops from the south, the 
force, in all 380 strong, continued its march, with the result that the 
British flag was hoisted with due ceremony at Fort Salisbury on Sep- 
tember 12, 1890, i.e. inside of eleven months from the date of the granting 
of the Charter. In the meantime the telegraph wires were opened to 
Palapye (320 miles onward), and the extension of the railway to 
Vryburg — 120 miles — was all but completed. Great were the hardships 
experienced by these early pioneers. Scarcely were they established in 
their new quarters than the wettest season within memory of man 
before or since broke over the country. The rivers flooded and remained 


impassable for months, and thus cut off from supplies they were com- 
pelled to subsist largely on native corn, and many good men, weakened 
by lack of proper nutriment, succumbed to fever and dysentery. From 
that day to this exceptional obstacles have been met and overcome. 
The Matabele War in 1893 was not only costly, but acted as a brake to 
progress. Annual visitations of locusts followed. Early in 1896, after 
leaving Barotseland in a state of plenty, I emerged from the Kalahari to 
find a second native rising by which over two hundred white men, women 
and children had already lost their lives. Added to this, drought was 
already creating a famine, and locusts were making that famine more 
complete, and throughout the length and breadth of the land the 
rinderpest had swept off whole teams of oxen. To meet these un- 
expected troubles special measures were being taken, and railway 
construction was being pressed forward. On the top of all this the 
grave situation in the Transvaal continued to create such a sense of 
anxiety and insecurity as to impose a heavy drag on industry and 
enterprise throughout the sub-continent. In 1899 the South African 
War sent things from bad to worse. 

In spite of all this Rhodesia as a colonising concern has out- 
stripped all her compeers. From Tuli to the Congo State, and as far 
as the southern shores of Tanganyika, the country is effectively under 
control of administrations of which the remotest districts have their 
executive officers. There are 2148 miles of railway — more than 
double the sum total of the railway systems of all the other colonies 
discussed in this paper ; and while the combined European population 
of these latter is roughly estimated at 3000, that of Rhodesia already 
exceeds 13,500. The telegraph system embraces a mileage of 3984 
miles, including the transcontinental lines. The imports of Southern 
and North-AVestern Rhodesia combined amounted to £1,290,750 
in the year ending 31st December 1905, and the exports from the 
former to £1,892,488. Thus this youngest of British African Colonies 
easily heads the list under the headings of communication and white 
population and trade, and that in the face of abnormal obstacles which 
there is every reason to hope have run their course and will not long 
continue to check progress. As regards revenue, the receipts in Southern 
Rhodesia from all sources in the financial year ending March 31st, 1905, 
amounted to £523,669, and expenditure for administrative purposes 
£499,768— a surplus of nearly £24,000. In the case of the two 
northern administrations, which are some ten years younger than 
Southern Rhodesia, the revenue stood at £48,030, and the expenditure at 
£150,177, leaving a deficit on the whole of £78,246. It is hoped that 
this will be reduced to vanishing point this year. Space will not allow 
of my going more fully into the material prospects of this most promising 
colonial enterprise. Suffice it to say that, mineralogically speaking, there 
is probably no country so rich. The gold output in Southern Rhodesia 
shows a steady annual increase, and up to October the figure for this 
year was already considerably in excess of last year's output. By the 
time the railway, already under construction, which is to connect Lobita 
Bay on the West Coast with the northern goldfields is completed, we may 



Fig. 4. — Settler's lirst Residence. 

expect a great development in the north in this as in many other 
industries. Besides gold, copper, zinc, lead, silver, coal and other 
minerals are being worked. One result of the railway extension opened 

in Sei^tember to the 
Rhodesia Broken Hill 
mines, 374 miles beyond 
the Victoria Falls, is that 
already a large quantity 
of zinc ore is being ex- 
ported. More important 
still do I consider the 
prospects of planting, 
agriculture and cattle 
ranching, especially in 
North - West Rhodesia, 
for without land settle- 
ment no colony can ever 
fulfil its functions success- 
fully. Minerals attract to 
a country a floating and active population, most members of which 
go out not to settle but to return Avhence they came either as 
wealthy men or as paupers. On the land surface is established 
not only a settled population but the hundred-and-one industries and 
manufactories deriving their raw material from husbandry, as well 
as i^rofessions and trades supported by such a community. From 
the time Avhen I was the only European in a position to discuss the 
then unmapped districts of Barotseland, or, as we now call it, North- 
West Rhodesia, I have held the country up as one of the gems of 
British Africa. As my experience has widened nothing has occurred to 
modify this opinion. In addition to most favourable land conditions, the 
rainfall since first gauged has shown extraordinary stability ; so unlike 
South Africa, where droughts are frequent. Lung-sickness and " tick " 
fever, so decimating to cattle from the Zambezi southward, have been 
kept out of the country, and as there is a good stamp of native beast in 
the country it is to be hoped the present wise policy of prohibiting 
importation will be continued indefinitely, 

I will now compare the administrative conditions of settlement 
which I noted in British East Africa last year with those I found in 
North- West Rhodesia this year. I have always been an advocate of an 
intelligently progressive colonial policy as being by far the most 
profitable ; and here we have, it would seem, an admirable example of 
wisdom and error personified in those on whom has fallen the grave 
responsibility of guiding the destinies of two young colonies. 

In East Africa and Uganda the government price of land is 
2 rupees, i.e. 2s. 8d, per acre — about five times its value, and thus at 
the outset a stone is tied about the neck of the settler. The railway, 
a government concern, makes no special terms for him and his family on 
entering the country. He is tolerated but not encouraged. In North- West 
Rhodesia the settler pays 8d. per acre for agricultural and 3d. for cattle 


grazing land. He enters as an occupying tenant for five years, paying as 
rent 5 per cent, per annum on the purchase price, and having proved 
his bona fides he obtains his title on payment of the capital sum. The 
administration when required will loan to him government oxen, which 
at the end of twelve months he may return or purchase, and will make 
him a loan at 5 per cent, interest towards the expense of fencing. The 
railway not only conveys him and his family at a 75 per cent, reduction, 
but gives a like rebate on all goods, furniture, implements, etc., he 
imports during the first tw^elve months. Now both these countries are of 
the highest intrinsic value, though East Africa has the advantage of 
being on the seaboard, while North-West Rhodesia is 1000 miles away. 
The Foreign Ofiice took the former over sixteen years ago ; Mr. Coryndon 
was appointed first administrator of the latter six years ago. It will be 
interesting to note the relative position of these colonies in 1916, to 
compare their revenues for that year as well as the total of the ten 
intermediate revenues, including sale of land at 2s. 8d. and 8d. or 3d. per 
acre respectively ; or in other words, to compare the policy of straining 
revenue sources to catch the eye of the taxpayer with more liberal and 
far-seeing methods. 

The British Central African Protectorate, formerly and more correctly 
known as Nyasaland, represents some 68,000 of the half-million of 
square miles of what may be best described as British South Central 
Africa, the remainder being absorbed by NE. and NW. Rhodesia. The 
Protectorate was proclaimed on May 14, 1891 — rather more than 
eighteen months subsequent to the Rhodesian Charter — and is therefore 
the youngest of our young colonies with the single exception of Northern 
Nigeria, part of which Avas, however, as we have seen, exploited by the 
Royal Niger Company at an earlier date. As was the case with the eastern 
and western protectorates, British Central Africa spent its earliest infancy 
tinder Foreign Office auspices, and with them ^was taken over by the 
Colonial Office on April 1st of last year. A few years ago the Protectorate 
promised to harbour a prosperous coffee growing community, its coffee 
for a time realising the highest price in the European market. Un- 
fortunately a scanty labour supply and the appearance of the coffee bug 
has checked, though not extinguished, the industry. Cotton and tobacco 
are being grown with some success, and chillies, ground nuts, and small 
quantities of ivory are also exported. The railway connecting Blantyre 
with Chiromo is approaching completion, and a branch line from the 
latter place to Port Herald is open to traffic. On Lake Nyasa there are 
seven steamers, and on the Shire about three times that number. 
During the last three years the European population has increased from 
450 to 600. 

In 1901-2 the imports stood at £135,842 and exports at £21,739, 
and in 1904-5 at £220,697 and £48,463 respectively. 

Of the old self-governing South African Colonies I will say but little. 
I was in South Africa only a few months ago and saw and heard enough 
to fill me with despondency. Though racial, political and economic 
rivalries may cause irritation and bitterness, these are temporary evils 
capable of self-adjustment if only allowed to run their natural course. 


What hurts, irritates, and prevents such sores from healing is the know- 
ledge that South African interests are being made the cat's-paw of 
political vote-catchers at home, and too often are misconstrued and dis- 
cussed in a hostile spirit by politicians whose experience of the Empire 
may be said to be limited by the boundaries of their own parishes. 
Eead the history of South Africa since it fell under British domination a 
century ago and you will marvel at the strange inconsistencies and 
unsettling reversals of policy emanating from Downing Street. You may 
even marvel what spell has retained the loyalty of a large minority. My 
endeavour has been — so far as time has allowed — to give a general 
account of our young African Colonies as well as a description of the 
main surface characteristics of the continent being so rapidly transformed 
into administrative systems from which will be evolved states destined 
to assist in the completion of the destruction of Europe's monopoly in 
progressive civilisation so forcibly commenced by the United States and 
Japan. The growth of these embryo states has been phenomenal from 
the point of view of space. Thirty years ago British Africa represented 
but 274,380 square miles, fifteen years back it had grown to 1,904,660, 
and to-day it stands at 2,536,900, or if we may include Egypt, whose 
destinies are equally in our hands, to a round three and a half millions of 
square miles, or 29 times the area of the British Isles. From the borders 
of the Transvaal northwards, all our colonies and protectorates are within 
the tropical zone, from which the manufacturer draws probably four-fifths 
of his raw material. Owing to the leading part our countrymen have 
taken in the work of original geographical work, we have been able 
to monopolise a preponderating share of Africa's plateau-land, on 
which Europeans may settle without prejudice to health. Thus quantity 
combines with quality. 

An interesting point in this page of Empire has been the extraordinary 
reluctance of successive governments, as compared with foreign govern- 
ments, to assume responsibility. Wellnigh every mile has been earned 
by private initiative, individual and collective. I fear Ave cannot credit 
this traditional governmental apathy with better intentions than the 
mere shirking of responsibility, but it has none the less had, on the 
whole, a most desirable effect, for expansion under such conditions, no 
matter how wide in its effect, cannot be over-expansion nor yet artificial, 
but is in fact a demonstration of a degree of national vigour auguring 
well for the destinies of the race capable of its accomplishment. Thank 
Heaven, Great Britain takes a much Avider interest in her world-wide in- 
heritance than was her wont ten years ago ! May she rise still more to a 
sense of her greatness and her responsibilities ! Those three and a half 
million miles impose a sacred duty on each one of us, and each should take 
his share in spreading the Imperial spirit — I use the term in no jingoistic 
sense — until it has permeated every class of society. Patriotism because 
unselfish, is one of the highest of virtues, and as such ennobles the mind 
and endows it with a cleaner judgment — a judgment less tarnished with 
mere personal considerations. AVith a more thoroughly Imperial-minded 
electorate, no government would dare to perpetrate any such act of folly 
as lost us our American Colonies, and the dread of possible disintegration 


would no longer be felt as it unhappily is to-day. To suggest that our 
oversea fellow-countrymen will ever willingly expatriate themselves is 
to disclaim all knowledge of the sentiments dominating them as a whole. 
Their blood is our blood, all our glorious traditions of the past are theirs 
also, and with us they share the right to a common heritage. There is 
no reason why, by an ill-conceived policy, the work of generations of 
British manhood should be lost to them and us, but there will be no 
security against the repetition of such a folly until we admit that our 
great self-governing colonies are already ripe to assist in the government 
of the Empire they adorn. 

Let those who dream of universal peace through the medium of 
international arbitration abandon their impractical and delusive hopes and 
workfor a consolidated Empire, through which means alone this high object 
is in practice possible. To my mind universal peace is impossible until 
one nation not merely occupies so powerful a position as to command 
deference, but by its liberality and disinterested world-policy compels 
the respect of the universe. Break up the British Empire, and with the 
increase in the number of independent states there will be greater scope for 
avidity and a consequent increased risk of war. Foster its growth and 
retain it in its integrity, and the peace ideal is not unattainable. 

By William S. Bruce, F.R.S.E. 

{With Illustrations and Map.) 

On June the 17th, 1596, Willem Barents-zoon (or Barents) and 
Heemskerke Hendickszoon discovered Spitsbergen after approaching it 
from the north-east, probably sighting in the first place the island of 
Cloven Clift'.. Steering southward along the west coast Barents and 
Heemskerke sighted a steep point on June 25th, and on the 26 th 
anchored between it and the mainland. This steep point Barents named 
" Vogelhoeck " because of the large number of birds there. AYe may 
therefore quite definitely state that Prince Charles Foreland was 
discovered on the 25th of June 1596, only eight days after the sighting 
of Spitsbergen. 

There appears to be some doubt as to the exact time when this 
island was named Prince Charles Foreland, but already, in 1612, the 
British called it so, while the Dutch called it Kijn Island, after a Dutch- 
man who broke his neck there that year. The name Prince Charles 
Foreland therefore seems to have full historical priority, the island 
having been named after the son of James vi. of Scotland. Hudson 
possibly may have given this name to the island, since he visited this 
part of the Spitsbergen archipelago in 1607. In 1610 the Muscovy 
Company dispatched Jonas Poole in the Amitie to Bear Island, and 
missing Bear Island, Poole sighted the south end of Spitsbergen on 

1 Outlook Tower and Scottish Oceauograijliical Lectures, February 13, 1907. 



6th May. On the 21st of May Poole was off the south point of Prince 
Charles Foreland, which he named Black Point, and landed at Vogel Hook 
on the 26th of May. From this time until 1775 the Foreland Avas 
frequently sighted and doubtlessly landed upon, but still little more was 
known of it than in the days of Barents. In 1775 Phipps was sent out 
on a North Polar Expedition by George iir, on the recommendation of 
the Royal Society of London, and it is interesting to note that Horatio 
Nelson was a midshipman on board the Carcass, one of Phipps's ships. 
The Foreland was sighted and a peak measured estimated to have an 
altitude of 4509 feet.'- Almost every ship cruising along the west coast 
of Spitsbergen has sighted the Foreland, and frequent landings and 

winterings have certainly been made (as I know by my sojourn there 
last year), but the curious fact remains that up till last year no serious 
attempt had ever been made to survey this large island, and thus 
practically all the accounts are from navigators who have only seen the 
island from a distance, and are therefore very far from accurate. 

Scoresljy's first landing in an arctic country was on Prince Charles 
Foreland at Yogel Hook, but on account of bad weather he was obliged 
to put off with haste, and had difficulty in regaining his ship. He says 
that "the number of birds seen in the precipices and rocks adjoining the 
sea was immense ; and the noise they made on our approach was quite 

He was also ashore several times in 1818 at Milre Cape, a prominent 
point on the mainland opposite Vogel Hook, probably having connection 

1 See p. 153. 


with it by a submarine ridge. He rightly describes this as being " a 
remarkable point, and dangerous to shipping going into King's Bay or 
Cross Bay, being surrounded by blind rocks." 

" The middle of Charles' Island," says Scoresby, " is occupied by a 
mountain chain of about thirty miles in length, rising on the west side 
from the sea, and on the east from a small strip of table-land, only a few 
feet above the level of the ocean. In some parts of the coast, indeed, 
the table-land, from which the mountains take their rise, is even below 
the level of the high-water mark, and is only prevented from being 
covered by a natural sea-bank of shingle, thrown up in many places to 
the height of ten or fifteen feet." 

Scoresby gives further descriptions of Prince Charles Foreland, 
emphasising particularly the strange hill named the " Devil's Thumb " ; 
but his description saying that " the highest mountains take their rise 
at the water's edge," is scarcely correct, for a series of raised beaches 
intervene between them and the sea. But this further description is 
good, where he says, " The points formed by two or three of them are so 
fine, that the imagination is at a loss to conceive of a place, on which an 
adventurer, attempting the hazardous exploit of climbing one of the 
summits, might rest. Were such an undertaking practicable, it is 
evident it could not be effected without imminent danger. Besides 
extraordinary courage and strength requisite in the adventurer, such an 
attempt would need the utmost powers of exertion, as well as the most 
irresistible perseverance." But probably easier ascents, by way of the 
great eastern glaciers, could be made than by the precipitous western 

One of the best general descriptions of the island is Lament's,- where 
he says, " Prince Charles Foreland is a long narrow island separated from 
the mainland by a shallow sound. Although Spitsbergen is eminently a 
mountainous country it is more properly regarded from a geological 
point of view as an elevated plateau, whose sides have been broken and 
cut through by glacier action, to form isolated ridges and pinnacles. 
It has no great mountain range or backbone. In Prince Charles Fore- 
land we find the nearest approach to such a regular arrangement of hills. 
And it constitutes a sufficiently striking mountain-range occupying 
nearly the whole sixty miles' length of the island. On the west side the 
rise from the sea is abrupt and precipitous, but on the east the descent 
is more gradual to low ground a few feet above the level of the sea. 
On the latter side the glaciers have considerably encroached. The chain 
of mountains is broken towards the southern extremity, and gives place 
to a low, sandy flat, where numbers of sea-birds congregate in summer. 
With the telescope we could make out the wreck of a timber-vessel, 
which came from the Petchora river five years ago, had been abandoned 
at sea by the crew, and was cast up on this shore. About the middle of 
the island a singular black rock — or rather mountain, for it is 2000 feet 
high — ^jutting out into the sea has been termed the ' Devil's Thumb.' 

1 An Account of the Arctic Regions. By W. Scoresb)', Jud., F.R.S.E., pp. 97, 98 ; aud 
118, 119. Edinburgh, 1820. 

- yachting in Arctic Seas, by James Lamont. 1876. Section iir. , pp. 229, 230. 


Some of these mountains rear their needle-like shafts to an elevation of 
from 3000 to 4000 feet." 

Baron Xordenskjold explored Foreland Sound in a boat in 1868, and 
sailed through it with his ship in 1872 ; while Lamont navigated it with 
his yacht the Diana in 1869; Conway in 1898 and the Prince of 
Monaco in 1899 also ran through with steam launches. 

Dr. A. G. Nathorst was the first in 1898 to attempt anything 
like a systematic investigation of the island, but these observations were 
only over a period of two or three hours during a summer night when 
he sent a small party ashore from his ship the Antarctic} Nevertheless 
he was able to give us a more concrete idea of this unknown land than 
any of his predecessors. Here is his description of the discoveries of 
his party - : — 

" ^Uh July 1898. — In the afternoon we were sounding to the south- 
west of Prince Charles Foreland where the depth was 240 metres, and 
afterwards I headed for this land to effect a lauding. The south part 
of the Foreland greatly resembles the north point of Duck Island (Ando, 
Tromso). Here there is an isolated set of mountains, and after that a low 
plain, whilst to the north of this begins a veritable land of mountains. 
This is indeed a fine range of peaks with glaciers between them. We 
headed for a bay situated between two peaks called ' Sommet Fourelin ' 
and 'Sommet Rond ' by the French Expedition in La Manche in 1892. 
I think it is appropriate to call this bay after that vessel. At 11.30 P.M. 
our ship was headed into the harbour and one of the large boats was 
sent ashore with Haslam aft and four oars, together with G. Anderson, 
Hesselman, and J. G. Anderson. Of course no extended exploration 
could be made as the whole landing lasted only a couple of hours, but 
from a geological point of view I thought it was desirable to get to 
know if the Hecla-Hook formation was on the west coast of the Fore- 
land too. I remained on the bridge until the party had landed at one 
o'clock on the morning of the 25th, and then I went to bed. At 3.30 
A.M. I was awakened by the captain saying that the landing party had 
returned. The geological observations were in accordance with what w^e 
had expected, and the botanists had made a rich collection, which we 
had not expected. Up to this time the Foreland has been said to have 
very little vegetation, two phanerogams only having been known on the 
island. It was therefore surprising that G. Anderson and Hesselman in 
these three hours had found no fewer than twenty-nine species. Of 
birds, the eiders were common and the lumnefaglar were very numerous. 

" Then we headed for the west and took a sounding at noon of 
1474 fathoms about 28 miles outside the Foreland." 

Garwood, who visited Spitsbergen with Gregory on Conway's Expedi- 
tion, writing to me on June 18, 1906, says, as far as he remembers, 
"Prince Charles Foreland is composed of Hecla-Hoek beds. Those 

1 Forinerlj' called Cnp Xor, and renamed Antarctic, 1893, by Svend Foyn previous to 
her first Antarctic cruise 1894-1895 ; afterwards Dr. Otto Nordenskj old's iU-fated ship 
during his memorable Antarctic Expedition 1901-1903. 

- Translation from Tva Smirar Norra Ischafvet, etc., by A. G. Nathorst. Stockliolm, 
1900. Vol. i. pp. 187-188. 


horribly uncompromising slates, quartz bands, and schists in which I was 
never able to get anything definite, though I have found curious oolitic 
beds from these rocks in Hornsund Bay. I know that the rocks of the 
main island opposite are Hecla-Hoek, and although I never landed on 
Prince Charles Foreland (except when we touched bottom in our launch), 
I have notes that the rocks coming down to the water on the east side 
are almost certainly Hecla-Hoek beds. I only state this for what it is 

Last summer His Serene Highness the Prince of Monaco invited me 
to accompany him now for the third time on a voyage to Spitsbergen. 
I gladly accepted His Highiiess's invitation, but pointed out that 1 
would like to be associated with some definite work, and suggested, 
among other alternatives, that he should land me with two assistants on 
Prince Charles Foreland in order to make a thorough investigation of 
that practically unknown island. The Prince at once accepted my 
suggestion, and having chosen two assistants I set about making pre- 
parations, in the first place for a systematic geodetic survey of a definite 
portion of the island, and secondly for acquiring a more exact knowledge 
about its geology and natural history. My assistants were Mr. Gilbert 
Kerr, lately piper and taxidermist to the Scotia, and Mr. Ernest A. Miller, 
a young electrical engineer. On 27th of June the Princesse Alice 
steamed into Granton, and on the 28th took her departure with the 
Scottish party on board. 

After a somewhat cold, bleak, and choppy passage — typical of the 
North Sea — the Princesse Alice reached Bergen on 30th of June. Here 
the Prince took on board another exploring party, Norwegians, headed 
by Captain Isachsen of the Norwegian cavalry, who had previously seen 
arctic service with Captain Sverdrup ; and Lieutenant Staxerud, a young 
Norwegian infantry oflEicer, employed in the geodetic service of the 
Geographical Society of Christiania. In all the Norwegian party con- 
sisted of ten men, who were to take up the exploration of the north- 
western corner of Spitsbergen, lying between Close Cove,i Smerenburg 
Sound, Red and Liefde Bays. Tromso was reached on the 9th of July, 
and at L30 P.M. on 11th July the south end of Prince Charles Foreland 
was sighted. From our noon position we steered for the north end of the 
Foreland, Vogel Hook (or Fair Foreland), and between six and seven in 
the evening were running fairly close to the shore north of Cape Sietoe. 
At 7.15 P.M. we were off the north-west point of the Foreland, which bore 
S. 40° W. about two miles, and on sounding obtained ten fathoms, having 
had eight fathoms just previously closer to the land. About 8.30 p.m. we 
were off Quade Hook, and finally, after some difficulty on account of the 
rapidly shelving bottom, anchored in Coal Haven, King's Bay, about 
11.30 P.M. Just after anchoring there were several white M'hales near 
the ship, and the Prince lowered a whale boat with Wedderburn in charge 
to try to secure one. Next day Isachsen and his party left by the Kred- 
fjord (a small steamer chartered by His Highness) for Close Cove while 

1 Close Cove, so Darned by Pool, 1610, and Ebeltoft's Harbour, named by him Cross 
Road. British Admiralty Chart and other modern charts call Close Cove, Cross Bay. Vide 
Ifo Man's Land, by Sir Martin Conway. Cambridge University Press, 1906. 



Captain Carr, Professor Hergesell, and I went ashore to make observa- 
tions with the theodolite for the ascent of a pilot balloon which had been 
liberated from the ship.^ Afterwards I made a short excursion towards 
a rather I'emarkable waterfall, which fell over the edge of a glacier ice- 
clifF about two miles from the shore ; and it is interesting to note that 
although a very large volume of water was coming over the ice at this 
time, that at about midnight, when I was in the crow's-nest and could 
get a good view of the same place from that elevated position, no water 
at all was coming over the cliff. The small river from this source, that 
ran into Coal Haven, was also practically dry. Some doubt may exist 
as to the cause of this sudden stoppage of the flow of water, but it may 
be sufficiently accounted for by a touch of frost, which had stopped the 
surface thawing of the glacier caused by the brilliant sun during the 
day. On July 14th the Frincesse Alice left King's Bay for Close Cove, 
and at about 1 P.M. the Scottish party left on board the Kvedfjord for 
Prince Charles Foreland. 

The Foreland being practically unknown, it was with some difficulty, 
especiall}^ in view of the soundings obtained, that Ave found a suitable 
landing-place. A suitable place was, however, eventually found on the 
east coast about three miles from the north end of the island. By about 
2 A.M. we had succeeded in landing all our equipment from the Kvedfjord, 
and she steamed back to the Prmcesse Alice in Close Cove, leaving Kerr, 
Miller, and myself to set up camp. Next day was spent mostly in 
arranging our stores and in making plans for excursions for the purpose 
of surveying the island. One excursion was made that evening north- 
ward along the shore for a distance of about two miles, and a start 
was made at the survey. On the next two days other excursions were 
made westward, and we reached the highest point between the two sides 
of the island, in a narrow gorge, which we called "Windy Gowl," on 
account of its resemblance as a wind funnel to the place of the same name 
in the neighbourhood of Edinburgh. On the 17th we set to work more 
seriously, and shifted camp from the east coast to the neighbourhood of 
Windy Gowl. We carried no tent, because the extraordinarily rough 
nature of the ground prevented us taking more than our instruments, a 
few provisions, and sleeping sacks. The country over which we passed 
was almost absolutely barren, there being hardly a plant along the whole 
route, and only two birds were seen, namely, one purple sandpiper and 
one Arctic skua. On settling down for the night we had three other 
visitors, namely, two skuas and one fulmar petrel. 

The journey was a somewhat laborious one, the distance of three 
or four miles having taken us over seven hours. The weather was 
brilliantly fine and the sun scorchingly hot, so that we divested ourselves 
of as much clothing as possible, and even then sweated it out. There 
was bright sun all night, with a cloudless sky and a light westerly air. 
The scene from Windy Gowl was a striking one. To the eastward we 
looked back over the dreary stony plains we had crossed, and beyond 

1 Vidf H.S. H. tlie Prince of Monaco's lecture on "Meteorological Researches in the High 
Atmosphere," Edinburgh, 17th January 1907, printed in the present issue, p. 113. 


the Foreland Sound over the picturesque glacier-clad mainland of Spits- 
bergen in the neighbourhood of King's Bay. To the westward, beyond 
a less extensive but more fertile plain broken by several lagoons along 
the shore, stretched the calm western ocean, with no laud between us 
and Greenland, and I may say at this time with no ice in sight. On 
18th July I sent Kerr and Miller back to the base camp for more stores, 
while I descended to the west coast and explored northward for some 
distance, making many preliminary observations and securing a fox and 
a pink-footed gosling. The west coast was evidently very much more 
inhabited than the east, for I came across several gaggles of pink-footed 
geese, as well as eiders, purple sandpipers, and snow buntings. I got 
back to camp about 11 P.M. in cold and misty weather, and Windy 
Gowl keeping up its reputation, compelled us to shift camp about mid- 
night and go down to the plain below. Even there, sheltered as we were, 
we found the night cold enough without a tent. 

Having taken longitude observations at this third camp on 20th July at 
about 9 A.M., we started back again unloaded at 10 A.M. for the base camp, 
doing the homeward journey, which had taken us seven hours when 
loaded, in about two hours. With all possible haste we launched our 
boat, carrying with us a tent, and loading her well up with sufficient 
provisions for a week. Then putting out to sea, we steered northward 
in order to reach the west coast of the island in the vicinity of the camp 
we had left in the morning. At Vogel Hook we were compelled to run 
for shelter into a cove, on account of a heavy sea and wind which got up 
from the westward. We were ashore for about two hours, investigating 
the wonderful bird rookeries, first discovered by Barents in 1596. 

The vegetation was luxuriant with rich mosses, scurvy grass, and 
many Arctic plants. Birds were countless — Bruennich's guillemots, 
puffins, little auks, dovekeis, kittiwake gulls, burgomaster gulls, skuas, 
fulmar petrels, pink-footed geese, purple sandpipers, and snow buntings. 
The sea and wind subsiding somewhat, we continued our course round 
Vogel Hook to the westward, and with some difficulty effected a landing 
about one mile south of Vogel Hook on the west coast, as there was too 
much sea for us to continue our voyage southward. It became necessary 
therefore to push southward overland, that we might reach the camp 
gear which we had left in the morning and bring it back to this new 
camp further to the north. It was fortunate that we had our tent this 
night, for it began to rain, a rain which was to continue almost without 
halting for the next fortnight. 

The camp was a most picturesque one, lying near the rugged, rock- 
bound, reefy shore, on which the wild western sea broke furiously, 
threatening our boats and gear, which we had to haul well up on shore 
that they might not be carried away. Eising at the back of us was a 
short and sharp talus, surmounted by a precipitous cliff of hard old sand- 
stone, probably belonging to the Hekla Hook series. The innumerable 
birds in these cliffs gave us a continual concert with their myriad voices, 
while the barking of foxes, curious at our intrusion, resounded from the 
caverned taluses of massive fallen rocks ; every now and then one more 
curious than the rest would approach us, though with the greatest 



caution. We discovered two lairs of foxes in the talus, and attempted 
to dig them out, following their position by their continuous growling 
and barking. It was soon obvious, however, that this attempt was 
absolutely futile, for the lairs communicated with one another by endless 
galleries between the interstices of the large loose rocks. 

We had now been ashore for a week, and even in this short time had 
recorded more definite information of Prince Charles Foreland than we 

Scottish party's camp on west coast one mile soutli of Vogel Hook. 

had been able to gather together from the books and records of more than 
three centuries. We had made a survey in the neighbourhood of Vogel 
Hook ; we had some more exact idea of the nature of the rocks ; we 
knew definitely many of the mammals and birds that inhabited the 
island ; and had collected up to this time twenty-four species of flower- 
ing plants. 

AVe remained at this camp until the 1st of August, during which 
time the weather was continuousl}- bad. Gale followed gale and heavy 
seas broke on the reefy shore, blowing the sj^ray right over the lower 
land. Fog and mist prevailed almost continuously, and heavy rain was 


the order of the day. Occasionally for au hour there might be a blink 
of sunshine, only to be followed again by thick, wet, stormy weather. 
An idea of the stormy weather may be had from the fact that we Avere 
never able during this fortnight even to think of launching the boat. 
On the 31st of July, however, we actually had a chance of attempting 
it, but after trying twice found it impossible owing to the heavy seas. 
If it was at all possible, we were due at the base camp that night, as 
the Prince had arranged to call there on the 1st of August to see how we 
were getting on. We were preparing to walk across when the weather 
got worse and we had to abandon all thought even of this landward 
march. Although we were able to do little in the way of survey, we 
made a number of local excursions and got to know intimately the whole 
of the north end of the Foreland. We collected plants and, cramped up 
in our tent, pressed quite a number.^ We also made a complete collection 
of the rocks- of the neighbourhood, and searched long but vainly for 
fossils, thus confirming the records of Xathorst and Garwood as to the 
sterility of these beds. Several foxes were shot, for they became more 
daring day by day as their young grew more mature and able to look 
after themselves. Altogether we saw fully a hundred foxes in the 
course of this fortnight. 

There are two kinds of foxes in Prince Charles Foreland as in 
the rest of Spitsbergen, where there may also be a third. The two 
on the Foreland are probably dimorphic forms of the same species. 
One is a bluish-grey colour all over, while the other appears to be what 
is known in Russia as the Cross Fox. On its under parts it is Avhite, 
but down the back from the tip of the nose to the end of the tail runs 
a broad pale brownish band, which is crossed by two similar bands in 
the limb regions. From the many adults and young that Ave saw it 
would appear at least to be the rule that the uniformly dark-coloured 
fox breeds more or less separately from the lighter cross form. We 
haA^e at least no record of having seen mixed parents or litters. This 
may even point to their being separate varieties. Towards the end of 
August several very light cross foxes were seen, and one was shot. 

Foxes were the only mammals Ave had seen on the island till noAv, but 
Ave met Avith the bones of reindeer and bears, and saw an occasional seal 
in the water, but later on I saw two reindeer. Birds were, as I have said, 
plentiful, and Ave had many opportunities in this veritable Bird-land of 
recording the species to be found and of Avatching their habits. On the 
25th of July the young guillemots, Avho were for the most part already 
hatched Avhen Ave arrived, began to take to the water, and by midnight 
several hundreds, perhaps thousands, were swimming about Avith their 
parents who came doAvn Avith them. Those Avhich dropped on the land 
Avere at once seized by burgomaster gulls or foxes, both of Avhich lay 
constantly in Avait for a dainty meal of young loom. The burgies also 
attacked the young loom in the water, but here the parents made a 
vigorous defence and drove them off. Kittiwake and burgomaster gulls, 

1 The plants are being examined and described by Mr. R. N. Rudmose Brown, B.Sc. 
- The rocks and fossils are being examined and described by Mr. Campbell. 


black guillemots, little auks, razorbills and puffins were all breeding on 
these cliffs at Vogel Hook and for two miles southward along the west 
coast of the island. Eider ducks and pink-footed geese, both adults and 
young, were very numerous along the shores, but curiously enough we 
never found the nests or eggs of either, except on one occasion when we 
came upon a single deserted duck's egg. Arctic skuas bred on the 
plains, where we found their nests, and snow buntings' nests with eggs 
or young were frequentlj'^ found in crannies. We found the young, but 
not the egg, of the purple sandpiper.^ 

There are many graves on this and other parts of the island ; the 
remains of boiling stations and huts ; abandoned boats and wreckage — all 
relics of the former great whaling industry, when Dutch, French, and 
British settlers lived and died on this island as on many parts of the 
mainland of Spitsbergen. Most of these graves have been burrowed 
out by foxes, and the skeletons lie exposed in rude lidless coffins, 
weathered and worn. Here and there is a board or a solitary cross, 
whose inscription indicates the name and nationality of the dead and the 
time at which he lived on the Foreland. I have in some cases read 
dates back to the beginning of the seventeenth century, and this well 
accords with what we know of the activity of the whaling industry in 
these parts three hundred years ago. 

Like many other Arctic lands there is an abundance of driftwood, 
especially on the west coast, and one notable feature is that a very large 
proportion is from the wreckage of wooden boats, possibly mostly 
Avrecked walrus sloops. This, with the invaluable though scattered 
supply of birch bark, is excellent fuel, and was always used by us when- 
ever possible. 

On the 1st August, leaving our camp as it stood and only securing 
it against weather and the ravages of foxes, we marched over to the base 
camp, and in the afternoon, as neither the Princesse Alice nor the 
Kvedfjord had arrived, walked three miles to the southward, where we 
discovered eight Dutch graves. We also saw two great northern 
divers — a new record for Spitsbergen. At 9.30 P.M. we sighted the two 
ships, curiously miraged, and they anchored fully two miles from the land 
in 5i fathoms at 11.30 P.M. Xext day the weather was very fine, and 
at 7 A.M. we were awakened by Wedderburn's welcome Scottish voice 
outside the tent. He had come ashore with letters and parcels. We 
were on board about 9 A.M. The Prince was at the gangway to meet 
us and gave us a hearty greeting. He had visited Wiide Bay and 
Danes Gat and had met Isachsen's party and Wellman's Expedition. 
We enjoyed the luxury of a hot bath, and then, after having gathered 
some necessaries, such as ropes, canvas, etc., we lunched on board at 11 
and left for the shore soon after noon. The Prince took his departure 
at 1 o'clock to the NW. to make a balloon ascent. This was the last 
we saw of the ships until the 26th of August. In the afternoon I got 
good sights for longitude, having compared my chronometers with those 

1 Proc. Roy. Phys. Soc, "The Mammals and Birds of Prince Charles Forelaud," liy 
Wm. S. Bruce, F.R.S.E., read November 2C, 1906. 


on board the yacht. The rest of the time was spent in continuing the 
geodetic work, first of all round the north end of the island joining our 
eastern with our western survey. We extended the eastern survey to a 
point about 8 miles southward from the Vogel Hook and the western 
to a distance southward of over 20 miles. In all we mapped in great 
detail an area of about 120 square miles, that being, roughly, the 
northernmost third of the island.^ 

The topographical features of Prince Charles Foreland are striking, 
and as there is no accurate description given in any publication, it may 
be well to give a general account of these features as far as we know 
them at the present date. 

The British Admiralty Chart of Spitsbergen, No. 2751, published in 
1865 under the superintendence of the late Captain G. H. Eichards, 
with corrections up to 1901, gives our present-day standard map of 
Prince Charles Foreland. This map is far from correct, and in many 
ways much less accurate than some of the older maps. Edge's map of 
Spitsbergen, published in 1625, reveals details which I know to exist 
and which have been obliterated in the British Admiralty chart. Edge's 
map has been recently emphasised by Sir Martin Conway.^ 

Prince Charles Foreland is a long island lying off the west coast of 
Spitsbergen between King's Bay and Ice Fjord ; it is separated from 
the mainland by a channel known as Foreland Sound, of which we know 
very little. This channel is, however, certainly so shallow that in parts 
it may, as has been supposed, present a complete bar to all vessels from 
10 or 12 feet of draught. But this is not altogether so certain as 
has been believed up to the present day, for the series of rough sound- 
ings which I took on board the Kvedfjord indicate that we may have 
3 or 4 fathoms of water as the least depth of the navigable channel. 
The water appears on the whole to deepen towards the east coast of the 
Foreland, but it is dangerous to make many statements, for as yet the 
channel is entirely unsurveyed. The Prince of Monaco's work in 
Close Cove and between Close Cove and Vogel Hook, and some 
soundings I have taken, throw preliminary light on the conformation of 
sea bottom at the northern end of the Sound. 

Making the usual approach to the island from the southward, or 
probably from a little to the west of south, one's first impression is 
that there are two islands, and one has to be very close to the coast 
before one can see that there is actually continuous land where at first 
sight a channel appears to exist. The Foreland stretches from about 
78° 10' N. to almost 79° N.,and lies roughly between the longitudes of 10" 
and 13° E. It is divided into three regions, the small hilly portion 
occupying 6 or 8 miles of its southern extremity, and the extensive 
flat-lying portion, probably nowhere more than 20 feet above the sea, 
occupying roughly the next 8 or 10 miles of its length, while the 
remaining three-quarters of the island consist of an almost continuous 

1 This uiap is iu the course of coustructiou, and will be published later. [Meantime a 
reproduction of the latest British Admiralty chart is given. 

2 No Man's Land. Sir Martin Conway. Cambridge University Press. Pp. 334-335. 



range of mountains, extending right up to A'ogel Hook — the northern 
point of the Foreland, This range of mountains, it is interesting to 
note, contains some of the highest peaks of the Spitsbergen archi- 

Prince Charles Forelaml and part of West Spitsbergen. 
(From tlie Admiralty Chart, 1901.) 

pelago. la all the Foreland measures about 50 to 55 miles in length, 
and has an average breadth of about 6 miles. The mountains forming 
its backbone rise almost always precipitously, and the ridge is only 
broken here and there by a rough pass from east to west. They do 
not, however, as a rule rise straight up from the sea, as they have been 



said to do. There is almost invariably along the whole of the west 
coast a low-lying terraced plain (old raised beaches), the highest terraces 
of which do not reach a height of more than 50 or 60 feet, and this plain 
is for the most part half a mile to two miles broad. At the back of 
the plain rise the mountains with steep taluses and precipitous cliffs. 
In the middle portion of the Foreland, towards the southern extremity 
of the mountain range which we are at present dealing with, a number 
of glaciers find an exit, but none of them reach the sea as they appear 
to do, to any one sailing along the coast, but terminate on the landward 
side of these raised beaches. There are no glaciers at all in the northern 
part of the island. The east coast presents the same features as the 
west coast AA'ith regard to raised beaches, but they are more exten- 
sive, the foot of the mountains being sometimes three miles from the 
sea. The slopes of the mountains also are less precipitous on the 
eastern than on the western side of the land. The middle third of 
the Foreland along the east coast is most fully glaciated, and for about 
12 miles there is an almost continuous ice-face entering the sea. These 
great glaciers have their gathering ground amongst the highest of the 
mountains that exist in the island. The altitude of the highest 
hill has been estimated by various people, but from exact observa- 
tions made on the island I was able to measure its height as being 
3850 feet. 

These terraced raised beaches, which form such a marked characteristic, 
are dotted over with innumerable shallow fresh-water lakes, and brackish 
or sea-water lagoons which stretch along the shore. Some of the lagoons 
are very large, and there is one notable one which appears on Edge's 
chart, which has been wiped out by more modern cartographers. This 
lagoon lies on the east coast at the head of a bay opposite English Bay, 
and is obliterated on all recent maps. It has an excellent entrance 
from the sea through which a boat, of considerable draught, can enter 
at high tide. The breadth of this lagoon is fully a mile, while its length 
is from 3 to 4 miles, and inside the water is of considerable depth. It 
appeared to me an interesting place for the naturalist : for here, with 
a good supply of fresh sea-water, protected from the violence of the 
waves and the rending of driving ice, many forms of animal life find a 
quiet home. These lagoons, and some of the fresh-water lakes also, are 
the resort of pink-footed and brent geese, of eider ducks, and innumer- 
able red-throated divers. Purple sandpipers dart along their shores, and 
occasionally a rarer bird, as for instance the sanderling and its young, 
which we discovered breeding here, and which is a new record for 
Spitsbergen. Kittiwake and burgomaster gulls also, especially after 
the breeding season, make their resting place here, Avhile arctic terns are 
to be found flitting across, and nesting in the neighbourhood of, almost 
every lagoon. 

The plains are, moreover, crossed at right angles by a number of 
burns and rivers which are fed from the snows and glaciers of the 
higher land. The amount of water present varies considerably in accord- 
ance with the time of year. In the early summer there is a very full 
supply ; but as the store of snow becomes diminished later on, and as 


frost binds the land the water which flows from this snow, n6ve, or even 
glacier also diminishes, and in autumn it may be difficult to find a 
suitable camping-place, through lack of even a small spring to furnish 
necessary water. 

There is a marked difference in the vegetation of the east and of the 
west, the west being very much more luxuriant than the east, which is 
often absolutely barren for miles. More of the big bird rookeries also 
are to be found on the west coast, and in their neighbourhood the soil 
is always considerably fertilised, and vegetation consequently more 
abundant. Mosses, scurvy grass, tall sulphur buttercups, many saxi- 
frages, small rosaceous plants and the arctic willow carpet and beautify 
the land. But even on the west coast there are sterile parts, and one 
not unfrequently passes abruptly from the flowery region into a veritable 
desert. A sign of luxuriant vegetation in the past in certain places is 
shown by considerable deposits of peat, which we used for fuel. 

Nathorst was probably correct in referring to the rocks at the place 
he visited south of Cape Cold as silurian rocks of the Hecla Hook 
series, but, like all others, even this eminent geologist was unable to find 
any fossiliferous remains. Garwood was probably only partially correct, 
for, as far as I have been able to judge, the rocks of the Hecla Hook 
series form the east coast of Prince Charles Foreland except towards the 
northern portion. I am further inclined to this opinion by the fact that 
at our base camp I was fortunate enough to discover remains of fossil 
plants. Many of these are indeterminable, but I obtained good examples 
of dicotyledonous leaves and, probably, stems : and also what Dr. Peach 
on rough examination considers may be worm-casts. Mr. Campbell, 
of the Geological Department of the University, has been good enough 
to undertake to work through the material and report ujion it. Moreover, 
our chairman Prof. Gregory, one of our few geologists who has actually 
visited Spitsbergen and seen the land over which the Scottish party 
worked last year, promises to inspect the collections, and will doubtless 
be able to help in making a good report of the geology of the Foreland. 
Roughly speaking, however, I think I may safely predict that the beds 
on the northern part of the east coast of the Foreland are tertiary rather 
than silurian, and are of the same series as exist in King's Bay. Half- 
way between Yogel Hook and Cape Sitoe are very coarse conglomerates, 
which are probably arch?ean and allied to those I have previously met 
with in Eed Bay. 

During our stay on the island we made continuous meteorological 
observations by means of recording instruments, checked by eye observa- 
tions, at as frequent intervals as other work would allow. We also 
made a number of astronomical observations at tlie eight camps which 
formed the centres of our work in the northern third of the island. 
These observations have been revised, and I have to thank j\Ir. Thomas 
Heath, of the Royal Observatory, Blackford Hill, for working up and 
classifying the results. 

On the 30th August we finally left the Foreland, but with difficulty, 
on account of four days' very stormy weather, which made it impossible 
for boats to approach the shore. Even on the 30th we had great 



difficulty, having to run the boats through surf, greatly endangering the 
re-shipping of our scientific instruments and other gear. On the night 
of the 30th we anchored in a sheltered bay with the Kvedfjord ofi' 
the large lagoon previously referred to, and during the strong gale 
and snowstorm recovered one of our boats which we had left in the 
lagoon a week previously. At 8.30 A.M. on the 31st we heaved up 
anchor and steamed southward towards Ice Fjord, and, sounding 
frequently, I obtained as our least depth 4 fathoms : but mostly the 
soundings were over 10 fathoms. We looked into Safe Harbour, and 
not finding the yacht there, steamed across to Green Harbour, coming 
alongside Frincesse Alice at 4.30 P.M. Fortunately the morning cleared 
up, and I took some photographs and sketches of the east coast of 
the Foreland, identifying several peaks I had seen from the northward. 
I found that several of the peaks seen from the Scottish standard at the 
south end of the " Base Line " were the furthest south on the island. 
Consequently, with angles taken at some future time from another 
suitable point, the position of these peaks will ultimately be very well 
fixed. On September 2nd we heaved up anchor and steamed across to 
Safe Harbour, in spite of very dull weather and a fresh north-westerly 
breeze. On approaching the bay so much ice from the glaciers was 
streaming out of it, that the Prince was compelled to abandon his 
intention of going in, and heading out of Ice Fjord steamed towards 
Tromso. At noon on 3rd September we were 30 miles west of Bear 
Island, sailing with the fresh north-westerly breeze. Dr. Richard 
found the temperature of the water much cooler in the vicinity of the 
Bear Island than either to the north or south of it. During the 
evening the foreyard carried away, but so coolly and systematically was 
this accident taken in hand that none of us aft knew anything about it 
until on going up we found the men stowing away and lashing up the 
yard on deck. On the 4th we sighted the northern coast of Norway, 
and in sight of the land the Prince made a meteorological balloon ascent 
to the height of about 15,000 feet. We anchored at Karlso half an hour 
after midnight on September 5th. In the morning we took in the 
trammel net, which had been set after our arrival at Karlso, and got a 
good haul of fish, and also a number of other interesting zoological 
specimens. We reached Tromso at about 2 P.M., and spent most of the 
afternoon going over our letters which were awaiting us there. At 
6 P.M. Captain Bouree took a photograph of all those who had specially 
helped in the exploration work, and afterwards the Prince entertained 
Isachsen's and my men in the cabin, toasting us all, and thanking us for 
the work we had done. He also told us he would have a special medal 
struck to commemorate the accomplishment of the scientific work that 
had been carried through on his yacht during the cruise. 

Our party on board the yacht, which included representatives from 
no less than seven nations — a Babel of tongues — was, however, destined 
to have a gloom cast over it next morning, when Captain Henry Carr, 
R.N.R., who had sailed for long years with His Highness as shipmaster, 
was found lying on the floor of his cabin unconscious and paralysed. 
Fortunately both the Prince himself and Captain Bouree were ex- 


perieuced navigators, and there was no difficulty in carrying on properly 
the conduct of the ship. 

On the 10th September we put in at Trondjhem, and next day 
the Princesse Alice left for Havre, instead of for Leith as was at first 
intended, on account of the illness of Captain Carr. Thus terminated 
the happy connection of the Scottish party with the Princesse Alice, 
Kerr, Miller, and myself returning to Scotland by way of Bergen, 
Newcastle and Leith. 

This is the sum and substance of the Scottish exploration of Prince 
Charles Foreland, and the summary of our knowledge with regard to it 
up to the present day. It will be seen that much work still remains 
to be done, and it is not unlikely that an opportunity may be afforded 
me, with a larger party, including scientific men, of completing the survey 
of Prince Charles Foreland under the auspices of that spirited inter- 
national scientist, His Serene Highness, Albert, Prince of Monaco. 



Meeting of Council. 

At a Meeting of Council, held on Monday, January 28th, The Hon. 
Lord Guthrie was elected a Vice-President of the Society. The following 
ladies and gentlemen were elected Members of the Society : — 

Hume Brodie. George Watson. Sir Wm. Willcocks, K.C.M.G. 

Mrs. K. L. Beilby. Miss Elizabeth Rodger. Miss M. H. L. Clark. 

James S. Davidson. Joha M'Leaii, M.A. Mrs. Pringle of Whytbank. 

Dr. William Paterson. Robert T. Morrison. Miss Elizabeth R. Barty, M.A. 

Alexander Hutcheson, M.A. James Wilson. Miss Margaret P. D. Stewart. 

A. T. Graham. Rev. W. A. Heard, M.A., LL.D. Belpin Behari Ghosal, M.A. 

Robert Campbell, M.A., B.Sc. Mrs. Lon Henry Hoover. Stuart Foulis. 

Miss Esther Hope Day. James Mathieson. Fred. J. Pack. 

The following ladies and gentlemen were elected " Teacher Associate " 
Members of the Society : — 

Mrs. A. C. Buchanan. Walter Burt, M.A. George Elder. 

Miss Ethel M. Lett. Hugh J. C. Kinghorn, M.A. Horace F. M. Munro, M.A. 

Miss Isabella Goodlet. Neil Eraser, M.A. Miss Hannah Watson. 

H. J. Findlav. Miss Annie A. Dow. Miss C. J. B. Birrell. 

J. B lunes, M.A., F.E.I. S. John Miller Nisbet, M.A., Frederick Mort, M.A., B.Sc, 

Duncan Brown, CM. B.Sc. F.G.S. 

Thomas W. Paterson. James Graham, M.A. Miss E. P. Taylor. 

John Grant. John Amlirose, M.A. John Frew, M.A., B.Sc. 

Alexander C. S. Scrimgeour, Donald Maclean, M.A. J. C'orrie. 

M.A. Miss Christina A. Cameron, Miss Margaret Johnston, 
Alexander Sutherland. M.A. A.L.C.M. 

Miss Margaret F. Anderson. 

Lectures in March. 

At Dundee, on the 5th March, Mr. T. G. LongstafF, ]\I.D., F.R.G.S., 
will deliver a lecture entitled " Tours in Central Himalayas and Tibet." 


On the following dates, 6th, 7th, and 8th of March, Mr. Longstaff will 
repeat his address before the Aberdeen, Edinburgh, and Glasgow Centres. 

On Tuesday 21st March, in Edinburgh, Mr. H. M. Cadell, B.Sc, 
will give a lecture entitled "Mountaineering in Mexico." 

Sir Harry H. Johnston, G.C.M.Gr., K.C.B., will address the Glasgow 
and Dundee Centres on 20th and 21st March respectively. The subject 
of his address will be " Liberia." 

Owing to Mr. Rudmose Brown's appointment as leader of an Ex- 
pedition to the Oyster Pearl Fisheries off the coast of Burma, his lecture 
in Aberdeen on 20th March is postponed indefinitely. 


Professor Sir William Ramsay, D.C.L., LL.D., Litt.D. — Our 

frontispiece this month represents Professor Sir William Ramsay, of 
Aberdeen University, who was presented with the Society's Silver Medal 
on the occasion of his address to the Society in Edinburgh on January 
31. Sir William Ramsay lectured on "Roads and Railways on the 
Plateau of Asia Minor," the region with which his name is so honour- 
ably associated. 

The frontispiece (the Prince of Monaco) of our last issue was from 
a photograph by Lafayette. 


The Flora of an Island. — In connection with the papers which we 
have published here from time to time on the distribution of plants in 
Scotland, it is interesting to notice a recent communication to the Trans- 
actions of the Edbiburgh Field Nafiimlists' and Microscopical Society (Session 
1905-6) by Miss Beatrice Sprague. The paper gives an account of the 
flora of an island of shingle in the river Orchy, Dalmally, Argyll, The 
island is of recent formation, and consists of beds of coarse shingle, and 
of an area where the shingle is covered with river sand. While the 
former part is almost bare of vegetation, the latter is thickly clothed. 
Vegetation apparently began to grow here about twenty years prior to 
the writing of the paper, but did not become noticeable until about five 
or six years ago. In spite of the poor soil and liability to flooding, no 
less than 143 species of plants were obtained upon the island, of which 
137 were flowering plants. A careful study of the sources of the flora 
showed that the vast majority of the plants come from the immediate 
neighbourhood, nine were mountain plants apparently brought down by 
streams, and nine were garden escapes. As is natural under the circum- 
stances, an analysis of the plants emphasises the importance of water 
rather than of wind carriage. 

The Survey of Lake Balaton. — We have received copies of the 
liesuUate der IFissenschaftlichenErforschung des Bcdatonsees (Vienna, 1902-6). 
In this work, issued by the Balatonsee Commission of the Hungarian 


Geographical Society, we have, as indicated by the programme of the 
survey, a comprehensive monograph of the great lake of Hungary, Lake 
Balaton or the Plattensee — a work on the same lines as Forel's great 
monograph on the Lake of Geneva. 

The sections of the work now before us deal with such diverse 
subjects as Ethnography, Archaeology, Plankton, Light and Colour, etc., 
and one section gives a comprehensive Bibliography. 

An instructive comparison might be made of the various phenomena 
connected with lakes as exhibited in Lake Balaton and in the Scottish 
Lakes. The small but deep lakes of Scotland offer the greatest possible 
contrast to the great but shallow Lake Balaton, and there can be no 
doubt that the physical as well as biological phenomena will differ 

Though comparable for size with the Lake of Geneva, Lake Balaton 
has a mean depth of only about 10 feet, and a maximum depth of 
scarcely 40 feet. In Scotland the greater lakes are relatively very 
deep, and there are only two even moderately large lakes which are very 
shallow, viz. Loch Leven and the Loch of Harray in Orkney. 

Some of the subjects dealt with have but little direct relation to 
lakes, or they have not been studied in that relation in Scotland. A 
large volume is devoted to Ethnography. The shores of the Danube, 
which have witnessed such great movements of the human race, must 
yield a Avealth of material for ethnological studies as compared with our 
ever sparsely-peopled Highlands, though the glens and the lochs are 
not Avithout profound human interest, and the dwellings of long-passed 
races, the duns, and broughs, and crannogs of our lochs have supplied 
material for various works. 

The sections on biology deal with some portions of the Plankton, 
the Diatoms, and the MoUusca. 

Dr. Entz points out that only by using the word in its widest sense 
can it be said that Lake Balaton has any Plankton, True plankton 
forms exist, but there is always a large admixture of littoral and bottom 
species which Dr. Pantocsek, in dealing with the Diatoms, calls pseudo- 
Plankton. There is an interesting chapter on the variation and the 
seasonal forms of Ceratium hirundinella. Dr. Pantocsek gives a list of 
nearly 300 species of Diatoms and describes very many new species and 
varieties. A very small number of species belong to the active plankton, 
and of these AsterioneUa gracilUma is one of the commonest plankton 
organisms in Scotland, Ehizosolenia longiseta has been found in some 
lochs, but is rare, while Fragilaria crotonensis is frequent in the west and 
north of Scotland, where the beautiful variety contorta W. and G. S. West 
is found in a number of lochs. 

The section on Colour Phenomena includes a chapter on Mirages of 
interest in Scotland in view of mirages of a very similar character 
observed on Loch Ness. The general effect of these mirages is to raise 
distant objects which are below the horizon so that they appear suspended 
in air over the horizon. Along a distant receding shoreline the effect 
is to raise the shoreline under promontories so that they have the 
appearance of overhanging cliffs. 


We have never seen on Loch Ness the distinct duplication of the 
mirage by reflection which is frequent on Lake Bahiton. The distant 
steamer was often greatly exaggerated in size in the vertical direction, 
and this may have been due to duplication. The receding steamer, 
after disappearing over the horizon, often reappeared when far down the 
loch. On one occasion the Fathers in the Benedictine Monastery at 
Fort Augustus saw a snow-covered mountain which they judged from 
its position to be Ben Wyvis. 

Von Cholnolsy explains these mirages as arising when, the lake being 
warmer than the air, a layer of warmer air is formed above its surface. 
The great volume and depth of Loch Ness cause it to maintain a high 
temperature in winter, never falling below 4r0° or 42-0'' Fahr. During 
winter the air must be generally at a lower temperature than this, 
especially at night ; hence we have the mirages almost every morning. 


Dr. Sven Hedin's Expedition. — According to a message from 
Calcutta, Dr. Sven Hedin reached Gyangtse on February 5, and 
expresses himself as delighted with the results of his expedition, the 
geographical results being especially rich. He expected to reach 
Shigatse at the end of February. The winter at the date of writing 
had proved exceptionally severe, with temperatures of 3 1° below zero (F.), 
and the whole caravan was lost crossing Tibet, but no loss of human life 
occurred ; and the specimens, maps, notebooks, etc., were saved. 


The Alexander - Gosling Expedition. — Lieutenant Boyd Alex- 
ander, with the Portuguese collector .Jose Lopez, the only two survivors 
of the Alexander-Gosling Expedition, recently returned to London 
from Africa. We have recorded here the course of the expedition up to 
Bima on the Welle {see xxii. p. 381 et antea), and the subsequent death 
of Captain Gosling, which took place in the vicinity of the Welle. From 
Bima it was found impossible to reach Lake Albert, as was intended, so 
the party turned north, and after some time had been spent among the 
little-known tributaries of the Bahr-el-Ghazal, the Yei was navigated 
down to the Nile, after which no further difficulties were encountered. 

Scottish National Antarctic Expedition. — Information has come 

to hand through the British Admiralty regarding the finding of another 
float thrown overboard from the Scotia, aft^r a drift of three years. This 
bottle was put into the sea on the 14th December 1903, in latitude 40' 
32' S., long. 58° 33' W., and was found on the 13th December 1906 on 
the ocean beach about 10 miles SE. of the entrance of Port Philip Head, 
Victoria, which is approximately in latitude 38° 18'S., long. 144° 50' E. 
The float therefore travelled 9355 miles in 1095 days, i.e. 8| miles per 
day. This is the second float which has been found on the coast of 
Victoria, Australia. 


New Antarctic Expedition, — Mr. E. H. Shackleton, lately Secre- 
tary of the Koyal Scottish Ueographical Society, is organising a new 
expedition to antarctic regions, which is to leave this country in October 
next. The plans of the new expedition, as meantime outlined, are as 
follows : — 

On its departure the expedition will proceed to N^ew Zealand, and 
thence will go down to the winter quarters of the Discovery in latitude 
77° 50' S. After landing a shore party of explorers, the ship will 
proceed back to Lyttelton, New Zealand, thus avoiding the risk of being 
frozen in like the Discover ij, and in the following year she will return to 
pick up the explorers. 

If funds permit, the expedition will land a party of men at Mount 
Melbourne, on the coast of Victoria Land, and will try to reach from 
that point, which is the most favourable, the south magnetic pole ; but 
the main object of the explorers is to follow out the discoveries made on 
the southern sledge journey from the Discovery. 

It is held that the southern sledge party of the Discovery would have 
reached a much higher altitude if they had been more adequately 
equipped for sledge work ; and in the new expedition, in addition to 
dogs, Siberian ponies will be taken, as the surface of the land or ice 
over which the party will have to travel will be eminently suited for this 
mode of sledge travelling. Further, a novel feature will be the taking 
of a special type of motor car suitable for use on the surface of the ice. 
The members of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society will cordially 
wish that all success may attend Mr. Shackleton's enterprise. 

The Anglo-American Polar Expedition. — In our issue of 
November last (p. 604), it was indicated that Mr. Mikkelsen felt doubt- 
ful of being able to penetrate as far north as he had hoped on account 
of the bad state of the ice. A recent communication from the com- 
mander of the U.S.A. revenue cutter Thetis, however, indicates that the 
expedition was more fortunate than its leader expected. The Duchess of 
Bedford was towed into open water by a whaler in early September, and 
probably succeeded in reaching Banks Land before the winter. 


Dr. Robert Bell, of the Canadian Geological Survey, who has been 
a corx'esponding member of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society 
since its foundation, has recently been the recipient of the Cullum Medal 
of the American Geographical Society, this being the first time that this 
medal has been awarded to a geographer who is not a citizen of 
the United States. Dr. Bell was also awarded the Patron's Medal 
of the Royal Geographical Society of London for 1906. Dr. Bell's 
many friends in this country will be glad to hear of this double honour 
which has reached him. Dr. Bell's scientific work has extended over 
a period of fifty years, and is now bearing fruit, not only in the opening 
up of the great hinterland of Canada, but also in the increased interest 
which is being taken in the survey of the little-known districts of the 


country, an iuteiest which was shown in a recent resolution of the 
Canadian Senate. 

AVe are glad to notice the name of Mr. W. S. Bruce, leader of the 
Scottish National Antarctic Expedition, among those who are to receive 
the degree of LL.D. from the University of Aberdeen. 

Geographical Congresses. — We are informed that the twenty- 
eighth National Congress of French Geographical Societies will be held 
at Bordeaux this summer, beginning on July 28. The congress will 
coincide with the Maritime Exhibition at Bordeaux, and representatives 
of foreign geographical societies are cordially invited to be present. 

We have also received a circular of invitation to the sixteenth 
Deutsclien Geographcv.tcuj, to be held at Niirnberg, from May 21st-25th 


Two recent articles by Professor A. Woeikow in Pekrmanns Mitteilungen 
(xi., xii.) on the distribution of population over the globe considered in 
relation to natural conditions and to human activity, contain much that 
teachers will find suggestive and useful. No geographer would, of 
course, deny that the distribution of man over the surface of the globe 
is determined broadly by geographical conditions, but he must at the 
same time admit that, owing to man's peculiar social characteristics, the 
distribution at any one period in time is not wholly determined by con- 
ditions of relief, of climate, and so forth. If we suppose that a prolific 
community establishes itself in some suitable region, then, if the social 
bonds are strong and the migratory instinct feeble, this area may 
become more densely populated than its resources justify, even though 
other suitable areas of the surface of the globe remain inadequately 
populated. China is, of course, the typical example of this. Professor 
Woeikow's articles, which are illustrated by two very striking maps, 
and some very useful tables, are full of interesting facts in regard to the 
relation between the natural conditions and the density of population. 

He naturally begins by a consideration of the broad conditions, 
especially climate, which limit the density of population in different 
localities. Probably most teachers have dwelt upon man's adaptability, 
and pointed out that climate is on the whole more important in that it 
markedly affects plant-life, than for its direct effect on man as organism. 
The cost of his food in different climates is of course an important 
point, and here Professor Woeikow emphasises the need of fat in cold 
climates. He regards fat as the most costly element in a diet, and this 
fact limits the possibility of large settlements in very cold regions by 
greatly increasing the cost of labour. As the grass family constitutes 
man's great source of carbo-hydrates, his distribution is largely deter- 
mined by the conditions suitable for the growth of its members. 

Professor Woeikow goes on to give some detailed statistics which 
are very striking. If we divide the world into five regions — (1) Europe 
with the nearer East and North Africa, (2) Southern and Eastern Asia, 



(3) Africa exclusive of the region north of the Sahara, (4) America, 
and (5) Australasia with the islands of the Pacific — we find that the 
first two include more than four-fifths of the total population of the 
globe, the Asiatic region having 840 millions as contrasted with the 
480 millions in the European region. A glance at a map showing dis- 
tribution will serve to show that the above are natural regions in that 
they are separated from one another by sparsely populated wastes, etc. 
Again, a point of much geographical interest is the fact that more than 
half mankind lives between 20° to 40° N. lat. Full of suggestiveness also 
is the fact that in the old civilisations of India and China the tendency 
is for the population to be uniformly distributed over the surface, while 
in the newer civilisations — alike in Europe and in those parts of the 
world which have been peopled from Europe — the tendency is for the 
greater part of the population to accumulate in large towns. The two 
maps illustrate, first, the general distribution of the population of the 
globe; and, secondly, the proportion of the community in the different 
regions which dwells in large towns, and the contrast between the two 
maps is striking in the extreme. As their colouring is broad and 
simple, it could be readily transferred to any blank map of the hemi- 
spheres for class-teaching purposes. 

Teachers who have been interested in the papers on plant geography 
which we have published here from time to time will find much of value 
in an article by Mr. R. M. Harper, entitled " A Phy togeographical 
Sketch of the Altamaha Grit Region of the Coastal Plain of Georgia," 
in Ann. of the New York Acadermj of Sciences, xvii. The article may be 
said to be the raw material of geography, rather than geography in the 
strict sense, but it is fall of interesting facts, and is illustrated by a 
series of photographs which would make admirable lantern slides for 
teaching purposes. The area considered is one remarkable for its 
geological uniformity over a large area, and with the geological 
uniformity comes great uniformity of vegetation. The plants of the 
region can be classified into a number of well-defined associations, 
which correspond very exactly to slight diff'erences in soil and topo- 
graphy, and illustrate very precisely the value of the conception of 
plant-associations to the geographer. The greater part of the area is 
covered with Pine Barrens, in which the predominating tree is Finns 
palustris, a light-loving tree which is sparsely scattered over the area, the 
individuals being separated from one another by distances of 20 or 
30 feet, thus permitting an amount of herbaceous undergrowth unusual 
in forest areas. These Pine Barrens depend upon the presence of a 
loamy layer beneath a surface deposit of sand. As the loam passes 
gradually into an impermeable clay, and the surface is gently rolling, it 
follows that the low ground tends always to be swampy, and the 
vegetation of the Barrens passes into a swamp form, with a predominance 
of trees or shrubs. On the other hand, where the surface sandy layer is 
thick, as in the sandliills of the region, another type of vegetation, 
scanty in amount and xerophytic in character, appears. 




ORDNANCE SURVEY OF SCOTLAND.— The following publications were issued 
from 1st to 30th November 1906 : — One-inch Map (third edition), engraved, in 
outline. Sheets 29, 54. Price Is. 6d. each. 

Six-inch Maps — (Revised), full sheets, engraved, without contours. Sutherland. 
—Sheets 50, 71. Price 2s. 6d. each. 

1 : 2500 Scale Maps — (Revised), with Houses ruled, and with Areas. Price 3s. 
each. Caithness. — Sheets xvii. 14 ; xviii. 7, 8, 16 ; xix. 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 
13, 14 ; XX. 9, 13 ; xxiii. 1, 3, 7, 13 ; xxiv. 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 16 ; xxv. 1, 
2, 9, 10, 13 ; XXVIII. 10, 14, 15 ; xxix. 3, 4, 7, 8, 12, 13, 15, 16 ; xxx. 1, 5, 9 ; 
xxxiii. 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 ; xxxiv. 1, 2 (3 and 4), 5, 6, (7 
and 11), 9, 10, (13 and 14) ; xxxix. 5, 6. 

Note. — There is no coloured edition of these Sheets, and the unrevised 
impressions are withdrawn from sale. 

The following publications were issued from 1st to 31st December 1906 : — One- 
inch Map (third edition), engraved, in outline. Sheets 43, 45. Price Is. 6d. each. 
Third edition, engraved, with Hills in brown or black. Sheets 2, 5, 29, 3C, 40, 43, 
45, 46, 54, 60. Price Is. 6d. each. Third edition, printed in colours ard folded 
in cover, or flat in sheets. Stirling. — Sheet 39. Price — on paper Is. Gd. ; mounted 
on linen 2s. ; mounted in sections 2s. 6d. 

Six-inch Maps (Revised), full sheets, heliozincographed, with contours. Ross 
and Cromarty. — Sheet 42. Price 2s. 6d. 

1 : 2500 Scale Maps (Revised), with Houses ruled, and with Areas. Price 3s. 
each. Caithness. — Sheets xxv. 5, 6 ; xxxix. 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 13 ; xlii. 4, 8, 11 (12 
and 16), 15 ; xliii. 1. Edinburghshire.— Sheets x. 8, 11, 12 ; xi. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 
11, 12, 13, 14, 15 ; XVII. 2, 3. Sheets x. 4, 7, 10 ; xvii. 1. Price Is. 6d. each. 

Note. — There is no coloured edition of these Sheets, and the unrevised 
impressions are withdrawn from sale. 

The following publications were issued from 1st to 31st January 1907: — 
Six-inch and larger Scale Maps. — 1 :2500 Scale Maps (Revised), with House-- 
ruled, and with Areas. Price 3s. each. Edinburghshire — Sheet xi. 1. 

Note. — There is no coloured edition of these Sheets, and the unrevised 
impressions are withdrawn from sale. 

GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF SCOTLAND.— The following publications were issued 
from 1st to 31st December 1906 : — One-inch Map. Sheets 13, 21 (Drift Edition). 
Price 4s. each. 

MEMOIRS.— The Oil Shales of the Lothians. Part I.— The Geology of the Oil- 
Shale Fields : by H. M. C^adell, B.Sc, F.R.S.E., and J. S. Grant Wilson. 
Part II.— Methods of working the Oil-Shales : by W, Caldwell. Part III.— 
The Chemistry of the Oil-Shales : by D. R. Stewart, F.I.C. Price 4s. 

UNITED KINGDOM.— GENERAL MEMOIRS.— Summary of Progress of the Geological 
Survey of the United Kingdom and Museum of Practical Geology for 1905. 
Price Is. 

ADMIRALTY CHARTS, SCOTLAND. — Loch Kishorn and the Approaches to Loch 
Carron. Surveyed by Captain Morris H. Smyth, R.N., in H.M. Surveying 
Ship Research, 1904-5. Scale, 1 : 10,GOO. Published Nov. 1906. Number 
3564 (3644). Price 3s. 
Loch Dunvegan, including Bay. Surveyed by Captain Morris H. Smyth, 


R.N., in H.M. Surveying Ship Research, 1905. Scale, 1 : 15,G30. Published 
Dec. 1906. Number 3601 (3653). Price 3s. 

Presented hy the Hydrographer, The Admiralty, London. 

IRELAND.— Map showing the Surface Geology of Ireland, reduced chiefly from the 
Ordnance and Geological Surveys under the direction of Sir Archibald Geikie, 
D.Sc, LL.D., F.R.S., late Director-General of the Geological Survey. Topo- 
graphy by J. Bartholomew, F.Pv.G.S. Scale 1 : 633,600 or 10 miles to an 
inch. Price 6s., mounted on cloth and in case. 

John Bartholometv and Co., Edinburgh. 
This map, complete in one sheet, is a minute and accurate reduction of the 
sheets of the Geological Survey. The drift and surface geology as here shown 
ought to be of much practical value and interest to agriculturists. 

ASIA.— Stanford's New Orographical Map of Asia. Compiled under the direc- 
tion of H. J. Mackinder. Scale 1 : 8,721,500. In four sheets. 1906. 
Price 16s., or 20s. mounted on rollers and varnished. 

Edward Stanford, London. 

An eflfective school wall-map. The relief of the land is shown by contour lines 
and tinted in shades of brown ; the depths of the surrounding seas are shown by 
shades of blue. The lettering shows both physical and political features. 

CHINA.— General Staff Map of the Province of Chih-Li (southern sheet). Scale 
1 : 1,000,000 or about 16 miles to an inch. 1906. Price 2s. 

Topographical Section, General Staff, London. 

CHINA.— General Staff Map of the Province of Ho-Nan. Scale 1 : 1,000,000 or 
about 16 miles to an inch. 1906. Price 2s. 6d. 

Toptographical Section, General Staff] London. 


AFRIKA.— Justus Perthes' Wandkarte von Afrika zur Darstellung der Boden- 

bedeckung mit 8 Kiirtchen zur Entdeckungsgeschichte und 14 Bildnissen 

beriihmter Afrikaforscher. Bearbeitet von Paul Langhans. Scale 1 : 7,500,000. 

Preis, 9 Mark. Jnstus Perthes, Gotha. 

This effective map, composed of the plates from Stieler's Atlas, is coloured to 

show the characteristic land-surface features, with political colouring superimposed 

in narrow bands. A series of inset maps shows the progress of exploration during 

the nineteenth century. The interest of the map is further enhanced by portraits 

of the leading explorers. 

EGYPT. — Bartholomew's Tourist Map of Egypt and the Lower Nile, prepared from 
the latest surveys. Scale 1 : 1,000,000 or 16 miles to an inch. With inset 
maps of Alexandria, Cairo, and Upper Egypt. Price 3s. Mounted on cloth. 

John Bartholomew and Co., Edinburgh. 
Tins map extends from the Delta to Wady Haifa. For a general map of 
Egypt there is nothing more complete than this new map. 

BAHR EL GHAZAL.— General Staff Map on Scale of 1 : 1,000,000, or about 16 miles 
to an inch. 19ii6. Price 2s. 


ORANGE RIVER.— (Provisional) General Staff Map on Scale of 1 : 1,100,000, parts 
of Sheets 127 and 128. 

Topofjraphical Section, General Staff, London. 

EAST EQUATORIAL AFRICA. — Anglo-German Boundary, Triangulation Charts of 
the British Commission, in 3 Sheets. Scale 1 : 400,000. 1906. 

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By Marion I. Newbigin, D.Sc. (Lond.). 

{With Maps and Illustrations.) 

The Canton Valais is a region famous not only for that beauty of 
scenery which year by year attracts an increasing number of visitors, 
but also because of its great scientific interest. In a previous paper 
(xxii. p. 285) there was published here a study of a Scottish region, 
which is remarkable for its cool, damp climate, and for the 
antiquity of the land surface. The Highland area has been for a pro- 
longed period a land surface, and its mountains and rivers have long 
since passed into geographical old age. It is far otherwise with the 
area now to be considered. In its present form the Swiss Yalais is of 
geologically recent origin, and its rivers and mountains are only in 
process of settling about a position of equilibrium. Every here and 
there one may perceive indications of this fact in the landslips which — 
old or new — disfigure the mountain-sides, and the same evidence of 
immaturity is to be discerned in the river-systems. Very different also 
is the climate, and with climatic differences come differences in natural 
products, and in the whole mode of life of the inhabitants. Further, 
the geologically recent origin means that the rocks of the Valais are of 
quite different type from those which cover such vast areas in the 
Scottish Highlands, and this naturally produces a difference in the soil 
which is of great geographical importance. Again, Avhile the Highlands 
have been isolated from the dawn of history, the Yalais, to some extent 
at least, has always served as a route between the countries to the north 
and south of the Alps, and finally, while the Highland area shows merely 
traces of a past glaciation, much of the Valais is still in the Glacial 
period, so that the contrasts are many and obvious. 



The Canton Valais has an area of 5220 kilometres/ 2015 square 
miles, and may be described in brief as including the upper Ehone 
valley from the source of that river to its entrance into Lake Geneva. 
The accompanying map shows the boundaries in detail. It will be seen 
that, roughly speaking, the canton is bounded to the south by the great 
chain of the Pennine Alps, including the highest mountains of Switzer- 
land, and to the north by the great mountain wall of the Bernese Alps. 
The southern and eastern boundaries of the canton are formed by the 
Italian frontier, the western by the frontier of Savoy, which debouches 
on the Lake of Geneva at St. Gingolph. The northern boundary is 
formed by the Ehone itself, from its entrance into the lake to the 
vicinity ofEvionnaz, and then by the watershed of the Bernese Alps. 

"Within this area the course taken by the Rhone is very striking. 
Beginning at its origin at the Ehone glacier we have first a steep 
Alpine stretch, extending in a north-east to south-west direction down 
to the town of Brig. At Brig the river bends somewhat to the west, 
but runs with a general south-west direction down to Martigny. 
Throughout this second region the valley floor is wide and flat, and has 
evidently at no very distant period lodged one or more lakes. The 
flat valley bottom is still very liable to flooding, and to obviate the risk 
of inundation the towns are built for the most part on the cones brought 
down by the lateral streams. At INIartigny the river takes a sharp 
bend — the "elbow" of the Ehone, and turning almost at right angles to 
its previous course, runs north-west to the Lake of Geneva. With this 
change of direction the river valley changes its form, seems to break 
through between the great mountain masses of the Dent du Midi and 
the Dent de Morcles, and forms a narrow, steep-sided gorge, which in 
the vicinity of St. Maurice is a mere defile, so narrow as to be readily 
fortified. Between St. Maurice and Bex the character of the valley again 
alters and we enter upon a. flat swampy area which is obviously merely a 
silted-up part of the bed of the lake. It may be well to emphasise here 
the existence of these diff"erent regions in the valley, for the climate and 
therefore the products of each show considerable variations. To sum up 
briefly : from the present boundary of Lake Geneva to beyond Bex -we 
have a wide, swampy, flat area, which is geographically part of the lake 
region ; then comes a narrow region, running north-west to south-east, 
too narrow to be fully warmed by the sun, and fully exposed to the 
cold north-west winds which sweep up it from the Jura ; then a wide, 
sheltered, warm area, almost Italian in character, stretching from 
Martigny upwards to the vicinity of Brig, and there passing into the 
Alpine region, naturally colder, which ends with the birth of the infant 
Ehone from its great glacier. Now the characters, whether of climate, 
of the natural flora, or of the cultivated plants, which can be definitely 
stamped as typically Valaisian are confined to the warm stretch from 
Martigny upwards, and to the larger lateral valleys opening into it. 

1 Erich Uetriclit, Die Ablation der Rhone in ihrem Walliser Einzugs-gebiete im Jahre 
1904-1905. Inaugural-Dissertation der Philosopliischen Facultat Bern z. Erlangung d. 
Doctorwiirde, Berue, 1906. Abstract in La Geogmphie, xv. p. 37. Reclus gives the figxire 
as 5257 kilometres {Nouvelle Geographie Universelle. iii. p. 127). 


A glance at the map will show that the crest of the Bernese Alps is 
much nearer the Rhone than the crest of the Pennines, or, in other 
words, that the northern lateral valleys are short and steep, while the 
southern valleys are much longer. It is a natural consequence that the 
human habitations for the most part occur in the southern valleys, the 
northern valleys being much more sparsely populated. One reason is, of 
course, that as temperature diminishes with elevation a larger area is 
available on the south side for the growth of crops, or of grass, than on 
the steep northern side. Those areas of natural grass, growing at high 
elevations, which in Switzerland are called alps, are indeed few on the 
northern side, and as we shall see, the economic life of the Valais is 
based in large part upon these alps. We shall in consequence be chiefly 
interested here in the southern valleys. Without stopping to consider 
these tributary valleys in detail, it may be well simjjly to mention one 
or two of the lateral streams, as of some of these we shall have much to 
say later. 

In general, on the northern side the drainage is in an undevelop6d 
state, consisting for the most part of short swift streams, debouching 
independently into the Rhone. On the other hand, on the south side 
the drainage is more developed, and the differential growth of the 
streams has resulted in various cases of river capture. In other words, 
one stream which, by reason of its larger catchment area, or the softei- 
rocks of its bed, has had more excavating power than its neighbours, 
has been able to tap the upper tributaries of adjacent streams, and has 
thus constantly increased at the expense of its neighbours. The result 
is that on the south side there are a few considerable streams, with 
tributaries also of considerable size, as well as some small streams Avithout 
lar^e tributaries. The chief streams of the southern bank of the Rhone 
in the area under consideration are the Visp, which drains the two 
valleys in which lie the health-resorts of Zermatt and Saas ; the Xavi- 
genze, draining the Yal d'Anniviers ; the Borgne, draining the Val 
d'Herens ; the Dranse, draining a collection of valleys, of which the 
most important are the Yal de Bagnes and the Val d'Entremont, which 
leads up to the St. Bernard Pass; and the Yieze, which drains the Yal 
d'llliez. On the north bank we need only meantime notice the Dala, 
which drains the valley in which lies Leukerbad, and the Lonza, drain- 
ing the Lotschenthal. 

It is not necessary for our purpose to describe in detail the course of 
these valleys, or to discuss the mountain groups in which they respec- 
tively arise, but something may be said of the great means of communica- 
tion in the Canton. Such historical importance as a highway as the upper 
Rhone valley possesses, is due to the fact that not a few of those deeply 
excavated southern valleys of which we have just spoken afford access 
to depressions in the great barrier of the Pennine Alps, and thus permit 
of communication between Italy and Central Europe. The two most 
important passes are of course the Simplon to the east, and the St. 
Bernard in the more western part of the Canton. As the map recalls, 
the great Simplon road has now been functionally replaced by the 
railway tunnel. Until the opening of this tunnel in 1906, the Rhone 


valley line, it will be remembered, stopped at Brig, but concected at 
Visp with the Zerraatt line. The traffic carried by the line of the main 
valley, and by the branch to Zermatt, was, previous to the opening of 
the tunnel, almost entirely tourist traffic. Almost, but not entirely, for 
there is a considerable amount of movement of workmen from one side 
of the chain to the other. It is because of this movement that we have 
on the other great pass, the St. Bernard, the Hospice, which is not, as 
the tourist is apt to suppose, merely for his benefit in the summer 
months. The summit of the Simplon Pass lies at a height of 2009 
metres (or 6565 feet), while that of the St. Bernard is 2472 metres (or 
8111 feet), the elevation in both cases being too great to permit either 
to have any significance as a trade route, though the significance of the 
latter as a highway is suggested by the fact that it is estimated that 
some 25,000 persons cross the pass annually, only a small proportion of 
which are tourists. In addition to these famous passes, there are a 
number of others ; indeed from almost any one of the longer valleys a 
passage may be forced to Italy or Savoy. Most of these passes are, 
however, of minor importance, except as regards tourist traffic. The 
best known is, perhaps, the Th^odule, a glacier pass rising to 3322 
metres (or 11,984 feet), which has been used certainly since the Middle 
Ages, and is constantly crossed in summer time. 

On the north side the passes are fewer, and from the nature of the 
case are less important. The best known is the Gemmi, and there can 
be no doubt, as is pointed out by Christ in his Pfanzenlehen tier Scktveiz, 
that the tourist who wishes to fully appreciate the peculiarities of the 
mountain-locked Valais, should enter it from the Gemmi. As the 
traveller stands on the summit of the precipitous Gemmiwand, he sees 
before him the whole range of the Pennine Alps with their summits of 
dazzling whiteness, and at their feet the deep valley ; and he sees also 
another sky, and other colouring, than that which he left behind at 
Kandersteg. The light is brighter, the insolation greater, the air drier; 
the whole aspect of the flora is southern instead of northern in type. 
In short, to cross the Gemmi is to cross in a few hours' walk from north 
to south Switzerland, is to obtain a foretaste of the sensation Avhich one 
feels on standing on some summit of the Pennine Alps and looking 
down upon the valleys of sunny Italy. The upper Ehone valley, which 
has been called the Spain of Switzerland, is indeed almost a displaced 
part of the Mediterranean lands. 

The special point, however, which these brief notes on the passes are 
intended to suggest is, that although passes of varying degrees of diffi- 
culty do cross the ring of mountains which almost surrounds the Canton 
Valais, yet the area is one of economic isolation. From its geograj^hical 
peculiarities it is clear that if it prospers it must be owing to its own 
products, not because it can ever serve to a great extent as a highway 
for trade. A true mountain region, with a high mean elevation of 
the surface, the peculiar course of the Rhone makes it even more 
completely surrounded by mountains than an ordinary river-valley 
can be. 

As the '•' elbow " has also a marked effect upon climate, a few words 


should be said as to its cause. Without going into geological details, it 
may be sufficient to say that there is reason to believe that the valley 
from Martigny to the lake, i.e. from the elbow downwards, is very old, 
much older than the portion above Martigny. It was probably 
formerly occupied by the river Drause, the large tributary of the Rhone 
■tthich enters at Martigny. It appears probable that the Dranse occu- 
pied this valley before the formation of the Bernese Alps, and the 
folding near St. Maurice. As the land rose slowly, the Dranse was able 
to excavate for itself a passage as elevation occurred, and there was thus 
formed the gorge now found near St. Maurice. Above Martigny the 
Rhone runs in a great longitudinal fold, which runs north-east and 
south-west beyond the points where the Rhone ceases to occupy it. At 
Martigny the Rhone quits this fold to avail itself of what was once the 
valley of the Dranse. 

One other point about the drainage system may be noted, and that 
is that there is a remarkable discordance, throughout much of the 
Valais, between the Rhone and its lateral tributaries. It is a familiar 
fact that in what may be called a normal river system the lateral 
streams grade gently into the main streams. In a recently glaciated 
area, on the other hand, the side streams often run throughout their 
course at a considerable elevation above the main valley, and either pre- 
cipitate themselves finally into the main valley by a waterfall, or series 
of rapids, or, if their excavating power is great, lie for the last part of 
their course in deep gorges. Discordance of this kind is expressed by 
saying that the tributaries run in " hanging valleys," or the same thing 
may be expressed by saying with the Germans that the main valley is over- 
deepened as compared with the lateral. Many but not all geologists, as is 
well known, ascribe this condition to the effect of ice. It is not neces- 
sary to enter upon the question of causes here, but we may point out 
the frequency of hanging valleys in the Valais, especially in the lower 
part of the Rhone valley. As has been already pointed out here (xxii. 
p. 648) the fact has an important bearing upon the distribution of 
human habitations in the side-valleys, for it renders the basal steep 
portion of the valley useless to man, and greatly increases the difficulty 
of access to the upper approximately level parts. On the other hand, 
the steepness somewhat facilitates the task of the geographer, for it 
causes a rapid diminution of temperature, a correspondingly rapid 
change in natural products, and thus makes it easy to distinguish geo- 
graphically between the Alpine parts of the side valleys above, and the 
warm floor of the main valley below. Another result is that as the 
glacier-fed streams descend to the Rhone valley they naturally deposit 
much of their load of debris as soon as their velocitj^ is checked, and the 
result is the formation of the large cones, wliich are very conspicuuus in 
parts of the Rhone valley. Fuller particulars as to these cones will be 
found in Lord Avebury's Scenery of Switzerland and the Causes to which it 
is due, Avhich may be referred to for further details as to the origin of 
the Rhr>np vnllpv.i 

1 See also Maurice Lugeon's Quelques mots sur le gi-oupement de la population du Valais 
— Abstract in Annates de Geographie (1902), xi. 



The Climate of the Valais. 

We cannot profitably consider the vegetation of the Valais without 
first considering the climate, which determines the nature of the 

It will be recollected that the Alps have a general east-to-west 
trend, and in consequence, in the language of meteorology, they form a 
temperature but not a rainfall divide. The meaning of this statement 
is easily realised. Looked at from the Italian side the great chain forma 
a barrier shutting out the cold winds of the north from the sunny south, 
or, more exactly, the cold air from the north is warmed by compression 
before it reaches the lower ground, and thus, in Hann's words (Handhich 
der Klimatolog'te) they constitute the dividing line between the sub- 
tropical climate of the Mediterranean area and the temperate climate of 
Central Europe. On the other hand, as the rain-carrying winds come 
from the west, i.e. are transverse to the chain, the Alps have not a rainy 
and a dry side, as have north-to-south trending mountains like the 
Rocky Mountains. But though these statements are generally true, yet 
the emphasis which has been already laid upon the mountain ring 
which encircles the Valais, paves the way for the further statement that 
as regards temperature, part of the Valais approaches the Mediterranean 
rather than the Central European area, while it has further an unusually 
low rainfall for a mountain area. Thus Zermatt, at a height of 5315 
feet (or 1620 metres) above sea-level, has a rainfall of 65 cm., that is 
approximately the same as that of Leith (26 inches) which is virtually 
at sea-level. The climate is not uniform, and varies not only with 
the height, which is only to be expected, but also according to the 
direction of the part of the Rhone valley considered, the mountain- 
locked portion from Martigny upwards having a hotter and drier climate 
than the portion from Martigny to the lake, which is swept by the cold, 
rain-bearing, north-west winds. 

Mean Annual Rainfall of Stations in the Valais, 1895-1904. 

1. Rhone Vallet. 

2 Southern 


3. Northern 


Station. Height 

in cm. 


in ni . 

in cm. 


in ni. 

in cm. 

MartigiiY,* . 480 


Champerv,* . 



Varen, . 



Riddes,* . 492 





LeukerViad, . 



Sion, . . 540 


St. Bernard.*. 






Sien-e, . 551 





Brig, . 678 





Fiesch,* . 1080 





Reckingen,' . 1349 


Saas Gnnid.*. 



Oberwald, . 1370 


Binn, * . 



The mean, in the case of stations marked *, i.s based upon a shorter period than ten 
years, figures not being available in these cases for the ^vhole period 1895-1904. 



Sume of the general features of the region as regards rainfall may be 
gathered from the accompanying map which is based upon the table, 
this having been obtained from the figures given in the AnnaUn of the 
Swiss Meteorological Bureau for the last ten years available. The map 
shows first that over an area which extends up the Rhone valley 
from about Martigny to Brig, and sends prolongations up the valleys of 
the Visp and the Dranse there is, as it were, an island of low precipita- 
tion, where the rainfall is less than 70 cm. (or 27i inches) per annum. 
Outside of this, and extending up to Fiesch in the main valley is a 
region which has a fall beneath 90 cm. (or 35 inches) per annum. Into 
the next region, that with a rainfall exceeding 90 cm. but less than 110 

Mean Annual Rainfall of Valais, 1895-1901. The figures are cubic centimetres. 

cm. (or 43 inches), comes not only the higher ground on either side of the 
upper portion of the Ehone A-alley, but also that part of the valley which 
is included between Martigny and Lake Geneva. The very high ground, 
i.e. that represented by the stations near the crest of either the Pennine 
or Bernese Alps, has a rainfall exceeding 110 cm. per annum. The point 
which it is desired to emphasise is that in the Valais rainfall is not 
directly dependent upon height. If one ascends the valley from Mar- 
tigny one finds the precipitation gradually diminishing until it reaches 
a minimum at Riddes or Sierre, and beyond that point again increasing. 
Roughly speaking, all the places below the elbow of the Rhone have a 
higher rainfall than the places above", and this is true both of the side 
valleys and of the main. Thus Champery in the Val d'lUiez, at a 
height of 1052 metres, has a rainfall about two and a half times greater 
than that of Zermatt at 1620 metres. 


The reason of this curious distribution is not far to seek — it is found 
in the varying direction of the Rhone valley upon which stress has 
already been laid. As we shall see later, the greater precipitation of the 
lower part of the valley as compared with the upper is associated with 
a lower temperature, and the causation in both cases is the same — up to 
Martigny the valley is exposed to the cold, rain-carrying north-west and 
west winds which sweep across from the Jura, while the bend at Martigny 
makes these winds rare in the upper part of the valley. Above Martigny 
these are replaced by the warmer, drier south-west wind, which enters the 
valley after blowing over elevated ground, and therefore with something 
of a foehn effect. The following figures illustrate the connection of 
high temperature and low precipitation with the predominance of the 
south-west wind in the Rhone valley. As recent figures are not 
available for a ten years' period, two periods of three and four years 
have been taken. 

Climatic Factors for Sierre and Bex. 
Period 1895-1897. 



Mean Annual 


of Station. 





. 551 m. 

71 cm. 




. 426 m. 

99 cm. 
Period 1901 

8-8° C. 



. 551 m. 

53 cm. 

9-3° C. 



. 42 G m. 

94 cm. 

9-2° C. 


It will be noticed here that the lower station Bex is slightly colder 
and much wetter than the higher, a reversal of the typical conditions in 
valleys. It would appear that the south-Avest wind prevails through all 
the warmer part of the upper Rhone valley, but in the Alpine region is 
replaced by other winds determined by the trend of the part of the 
valley considered. At Reckingen, with a rainfall of over 100 cm. (five 
years' mean) the prevailing wind is west. The heavy rainfall is due to 
the warm, moist wind which comes up the valley. The relation between 
rainfall and wind is prettily showm by the distribution of the beech, 
which, according to Christ, extends as far up the Rhone valley as the 
westerly wind from Lake Geneva penetrates, i.e. throughout the area 
where the damp lake climate prevails (see map, p. 190). In other words, 
it extends up the valley to a point approximately midway between 
Martigny and Sion, where the dry warm winds cause its disappearance. 

The other three maps illustrate the temperature conditions, and are 
again based upon a ten years' mean. The three maps show respectively 
the mean annual, the mean January, and the mean July temperature. 
Taking the mean annual first, we find that there is an area Avith a mean 
of over 9" C. which extends from about Martigny nearly as far as Brig. 
The next area, that including temperatures betw^een 9° and 3°, includes 
not only the higher parts of the main and side valleys, but also the 
lower part of the main valley. Finally, the great elevations have a mean 
annual tempeiature of below 3°. The tAvo othtr maps (p. 180) shoAv that 



Mean Monthly Temperatures of certain Stations in the Valais, 
1895-1904, compared with the Mean Monthly Temperature 
AT Kingussie. 

Name of 


Mean Monthly Temperatures— Centigrade. 




Apr. 1 May 


July Aug. 

Sept, , Oct. i Nov. I Dec. 






9-9 13-7 


19-5 180 

15-2 9-5 4-1 00 





2-7 3-9 



14-3 13-4 


6-2 2-0 -1-7 












4-1 -0-8 -5-1 

St. Bernard, 


-8-3 1 








4'3 -0-7 -4-2 -7-2 





2-9 5-2 8-9 


13-3' 12-9' 10-7 7-0 38 2-4 

* The figure's for Kingussie are tak-eu from Dr. Biichan's paper on "The Mean Atmo- 
spheric Temperature of the British Islands," Jour. Scott. Meteorol. Soc, Series iii., xiii. and 
.\iv. , p. 3, and are converted to Centigrade. 

Mean Annual Temperature of Valais, 1895-1904. The figures are temperatures, Centigrade. 

the favoured area of the Khone valley above Martigny is both hotter in 
summer and less bitterly cold in winter than would a ]?riori be expected 
from the elevation. In order to bring out some features of the annual 
march of temperature as compared with that of our own country the 


accompanying curve has been constructed which contrasts the mean 
monthly temperatures of certain places in the Valais with the typically 
Highland area of Kingussie. The figures upon which the diagram is 
based, as well as the mean monthly temperature of Leukerbad, are given 
in the table. The point which the diagram specially illustrates is that, 
as contrasted with the insular climate of Kingussie, the climate of the 

Jan. Feb. Hat- Ap Ma^Ju Jly Auo S"ep Oct Nov Dec. 

Mean Monthly Temperatures of three stations in the Valais 1895-190i, compared with 
' those of Kingussie. The temperatures are Centigrade. 

Valais is typically continental. This is well shown in the sudden rise 
and fall of the curve in spring and autumn. Many plants which flourish 
at, for instance, Sierre, will not grow at Kingussie, not, as is sometimes 
supposed, because of the winter cold at the latter place— it is m point 
of fact much colder in winter in the Valais— but because spring when it 
comes is no laggard but comes swift-footed and sure. In the High- 
lands the rise of temperature is slow and fluctuating, mild days and 
bitterly cold ones often alternating. The consequence is that the plants 



are tempted one day to bggin active life, and the next are nipped with 
the frost. In the Valais they are protected with snow and condemned 

Mean July Temperature of Valais, 1895-1904. The tigures are temperatures. Centigrade. 

JNI.-an .lanuary Temperature of Valais, 1895-1904. The figures are temperatures, Centigrade. 

to forced inactivity until with a rush spring comes triumphant once for 
1)11 over the forces of winter. 

Another interesting point which the diagram shows is that, con- 


trasting places of increasiug height above sea-level, we find that the 
temperature gradient is steepest in the lowest places and least steep in 
the higher. This is very marked when the St. Bernard gradient is 
contrasted with the Sierre one. Zermatt, which is intermediate in 
height between the two, is also intermediate in this respect also. This 
is a general characteristic of mountain resorts, which tend to approach 
nearer the insular type of climate than places in the valleys. 

The reason for this is interesting. The first point to be noticed is 
that the difference of temperature due to elevation is much greater in 
summer than in winter. In December, for instance, the curves for 
Zermatt and Sierre approach one another much more closely than in 
July, the actual difference of mean being 5'1° in the first case, and G'S" 
in the other. Even more marked is the difference in the case of the St. 
Bernard and Zermatt figures, for it is there 5 '8° in July, and only 2'1° 
in December. The causation is to be found in the so-called inversions 
of temperature,^ v/hich are frequent in Alpine regions. Under ordinary 
circumstances temperature diminishes with elevation, but in mountain 
regions during calm, clear weather in winter, it frequently happens that 
the valley floors are colder and damper than a region on their walls. 
Tn ascending from the valley floors at these times, one passes into a 
warmer region, and on ascending still higher, comes again to a cold 
stratum. These inversions are so frequent that they affect the mean 
temperature in the winter months, and produce the appearances noted 
above, that is, they lessen the steepness of the curve showing the annual 
march of the temperature. For a detailed account of the cause of the 
inversion, reference should be made to Hann's Handhuch, but it may in 
general terms be given as the result of the tendency for the cold, heavy 
air to sink to the bottom of the valley, while the warm air rises. These 
inversions have an interesting effect on the life of the inhabitants, both 
of the Valais and of the Alps generally. First of all they render the flat 
valley floors, which are of course often old lake beds, very unsuitable 
for human habitations. There is throughout the Alps a general 
tendency for the houses to be placed on the walls of the valleys rather 
than on the floor, because experience has shown that an elevation of 
even a few metres may cause a considerable rise of temperature in 
autumn and winter. Again, in the Valais where the temperature con- 
ditions are favourable, the frequency of autumnal inversions makes it 
possible for the inhabitants to ascend to considerable elevations and yet 
enjoy comparatively warm temperatures. Something was said of these 
autumn and winter migrations in a particular valley in a previous 
article published here (xxii. p. 648). 

It may be repeated that these inversions are local to the valleys 
concerned, and are therefore only suggested by the curves given above. 
To prove their existence it would be necessary to take a series of 
temperature readings at different heights in the same valley. Such 
readings have been taken and examples are quoted by Hann and Kerner. 

1 See Hann's Handbook of Climatology, Part i., translated by Ward, p. 252 et seq., and 
Kerner in Zeitschrift d. oesterr. Gesellschaft f. Meteorologie, xi. (1876), p. 1 et seq. 


One other point is worth mention. It will be noted that the diagram 
shows that the summer temperature of Kingussie is actually higher 
than that of Zermatt. To any one who has experienced both climates 
this may seem absurd. One may spend a whole summer in the High- 
lands and hardly find a day when it is possible to sit for long out of 
doors in comfort, while at Zermatt for day after day the temperature 
may be almost intolerably hot. The explanation is of course to be 
sought in the difference of insolation due to altitude. According to 
figures quoted by Hann {pi). cit., p. 232), while at Whitby the difference 
between the sun and shade temperature is only 5'6^ on the Gorner- 
grat it is no less than 32'8°, and at the Eiffelberg it is 21°. In 
consequence, on a clear day one may bask in the sunshine on the 
Gornergrat at a height of 3140 metres above sea-level in spite of the 
proximity of ice and snow. The figures given in the table are of course 
shade temperatures. 

To return to the general temperature conditions in the Valais, it 
must not be supposed that the unusual conditions of warmth in the 
upper Ehone valley upon which so mnch stress has been laid, are solely 
due to shelter from cold winds, or to the warming and drying of the air 
by compression as it descends from the mountain crests. The direction 
of the valley, which allows the sun to shine for a much longer period 
than would be possible in an east-to-west valley, is an important factor, 
as is also the width of the valley. Throughout Switzerland, as all 
tourists know, the actual, as distinguished from the theoretical, climate 
of a valley, depends upon the amount of its exposure to the sun. Thus 
in the Yalais the difference between the temperature of Leukerbad, on 
the north side and thus facing south, and of Zermatt in a south trend- 
ing valley is greater than the difference of elevation warrants. There 
are, however, some interesting facts, in regard to the temperature con- 
ditions at Zermatt, which we shall have to consider later in connection 
with the distribution of woods in the Valais. 

Something has already been said of the winds of the Yalais ; it only 
remains to say a few words in regard to that curious wind known as the 
foehn. The foehn is a warm dry wind which blows, sometimes with 
great violence, from a southerly or south-easterly direction in certain 
of the Swiss valleys, and is often of great importance as the melter 
of the winter's snow and therefore as the harbinger of spiing. The 
causation has been shown to be the existence of a barometric depression 
in a line between Ireland and the Bay of Biscay, which causes the air 
to be sucked out of the Alpine region. As the mountain wall of the 
Alps prevents any direct movement of air from the south, the air over 
the crest of the ridge is drawn down to the valleys to fill the place of 
that which has travelled westward. This air is warmed and dried by 
compression as it descends, and appears in the deep valleys as the hot, 
dry, enervating foehn. Xow, owing to its trend, the upper Ehone 
valley is not visited by the foehn, while the portion below Martigny is 
visited with, often violent, foehn winds. The result is to make this 
part warmer and drier than it would otherwise be. 

As a whole, however, the Yalais is remarkable for the frequency of 


calms, as compared for instance with our own windy climate. It is the 
frequency of calms which makes it possible to use places of relatively 
great elevation as health resorts, while, on the other hand, it makes 
it impossible for the foreigner at least to live with comfort on the floor 
of the Ehone valley in summer. This prevalence of calms is, however, 
only true of places situated in a valley. At the St. Bernard Hospice, 
for example, calms do not occur, and the wind blows either from the 
Swiss slope, i.e. from the noith-east, or from the Italian slope, i.e. from 
the south-west, the former wind being the more frequent. Both winds 
come from warmer regions, and therefore both are moisture- can ying, 
hence the heavy precipitation. 

The two important facts that emeige from this study of the 
Valaisian climate are, first, the unexpectedly high temperature over 
much of the area, and second, the unexpectedly low rainfall. Both 
are reflected in the vegetation. The high temperature leads to the 
growth of plants which are Mediterranean in character, the low rainfall 
limits the growth of moisture-loving plants like the deciduous trees. 
The steppe-like conditions produced by the strong insolation and low 
precipitation would be even more striking than they are were it not for 
that system of irrigation which is everywhere visible in the dry region 
above Martigny. Fortunately for the Yalaisian, he has in his glacier- 
covered mountains a self-regulating mechanism which fills his water- 
courses the fuller the stronger the sun shines, and therefore the greater 
the need felt by his cherished plants. Let there be in summer a series 
of dull and cloudy days and the glacial torrents which feed his " hisses " 
dwindle to a mere shadow of their former selves.^ Let the sun once 
more blaze forth in his splendour, and the torrents will pour a lavish 
flood into his watercourses, so that not only do alps and crops and 
vineyards receive all that they need, but a thousand streams trickling 
down the mountain sides proclaim the superabundance of lavish natuie, 
while the climber whose task is lightened by the return of clear skies 
rejoices in the haj^py fortune which in the alps combines the interest of 
tourist and crops. 

The Zones or Vegetation in the Valais. 

In looking generally at the zones of vegetation in the Valais, and at 
their constituent plants so far as these have geographical significance, it 
is convenient first of all to discuss the limits of each. As the deciduous 
woods of the canton are insignificant, we need only recognise three 
regions: — (1) The region of cultivation; (2) the region of coniferous 
woods ; and (3) the region of the high pastures or alps. Rion, as 
quoted by Christ, gives 1263 metres (or 4143 feet) as the mean upper 
limit of cultivation in the Valais. Imhof (see p. 191 footnote) shows 
that the coniferous woods have a mean elevation of 2150 metres (or 
7054 feet),while according to Jegerlehner (BeitrUge zur GeophysiJc,\. 1901-2) 
the mean height of the snowline, which virtually forms the upward limit 

' For some actual figures as to the effect of a drop of temperature on tlie volume of the 
streams, see the paper by Erich Uetrecht, referred to on p. 171. 


of the alps, is 3050 metres (or 10,000 feet). Something will be said 
below of the details of temperature in the region of the woods, but 
the following, quoted from Christ's Pflanzenlehen der Schweiz, gives an 
interesting rough approximation. Christ says in effect that the zone of 
cultivation extends upwards so long as any two months have a mean 
temperature below zero, the coniferous woods so long as there are no 
more than Jive mouths in the year in which the mean temperature is 
less than zero, while in the alpine region there may be seven or more 
months with a mean of less than zero. On the diagram on p. 179 a line 
has been drawn through the zero reading to show that while Sierre with 
only one month with a mean temperature of below zero, is well Avithin 
the zone of cultivation, and Zermatt with four months in which the 
mean is below zero, is well within the coniferous area, the St. Bernard 
with eight months in which the mean drops below zero, is above the tree- 
line and falls into the alpine area. 

I. — The Region of Cultivation. 

In the region of cultivation, especially in the warm stretch between 
Martigny and Brig, the wild plants have a general ]\rediterranean aspect, 
and owing to the dryness the steppe character is pronounced. The 
warmth of the climate is shown by the presence of such cultivated plants 
as Indian corn and tobacco, despite the mean elevation. The chief plant 
of the lower part of the cultivated zone, that is, from about 460 to 800 
metres (or 1500 to 2624 ft.), is however the vine, which is of great 
importance in the life of the inhabitants. It is grown Avherever the 
slope of the valley walls is such as to permit of the needful terracing, 
and is found in the main valley from about Martigny to Morel, especially 
on the northern side of the valley, and in the lateral valleys has a 
special extension up the valleys of the Dranse and the Visp. It is 
virtually absent from the valley between St. Maurice and Martigny for 
the climatic reasons already dwelt upon, and because of the shape of the 
valley. In the Dranse valley vine3Mrds extend up to above 800 metres 
(2624 ft.) in the vicinity of Sembrancher, while their upward extension 
in the Visp valley is even more remarkable. Near Stalden the limit is 
about 834 metres (or 2736 ft.), but in 1878 Christ found vineyards at 
a heif^ht of 1020 metres (or 3346 ft.) in the vicinity of this village. 
The fi<''ures are only of interest because they serve once more to call 
attention to the peculiar climatic conditions prevailing here, upon which 
so much stress has already been laid. The station of Griichen (cf. p. 175) 
shows that the rainfall here is very low, and the proximity to the great 
mountain group, of which Monte Rosa is the centre, produces, as will be 
shown below, very favourable conditions of temperature. 

Throughout the Valais the vineyards require artificial irrigation, and 
owiuf to the way iii which most of the lateral torrents run at the bottom 
of deep gorges before they enter the main valley, the water has to be 
brought from great distances, the straight lines of the channels being 
visible for miles along the hillsides. The wine is of great importance 
as an article of diet on account of the monotony of the ordinary food 


available — dry rye bread, baked once or twice a year only, hard cheese, 
and dried meat. In the article already alluded to (xxii. p. 648) some- 
thing has been said of the appreciation in which it is held, and how 
certain kinds are stored in the mountain cellars and storehouses until 
they obtain the aroma wliich is so greatly prized. As is only natural 
under the circumstances, wine plays a large part in the social life of the 

Above the zone where the vine forms the chief crop comes a region 
where rye predominates, this being the chief cereal of the region, and 
the one used to make the native bread. As has been said above, Rion 
gives 1263 metres (4143 ft.) as the line which marks the mean upward 
extension of cultivation, but in detail this varies greatly according to 
exposure. The typical instance is of course the corn-fields of Findelen,^ 
near Zermatt, which extend up to 2100 metres (6890 ft.) on the sunny 
side of the valley, whilst the shady side is thickly clothed with Arolla 
pine, but almost every valley shows similar, if less striking conditions. 
Thus in the Yal d'Anniviers we have fields near the village of Chandolin 
at a height of 1900 metres (6233 ft.). (Brunhes and Girardin.^) 

Mingled with the rye of this upper zone are various other crops, 
grown on a smaller scale, while throughout the zone of cultivation are 
an abundance of fruit-trees, varying from the figs and peaches of the 
Rhone valley to the August^ripening cherries of the upper region. All 
the side valleys afford interesting studies of progressive change in the 
characters of the cultivated plants, and what has been already said as to 
temperature, etc., will make it clear that in the upper region, whatever 
the exposure, only fast-growing annuals can be grown with any prospect 
of success. Where, as frequently happens, the valley consists of a series 
of basins separated by relatively narrow steep defiles, the differences in 
the vegetation of the successive basins is very striking. The Val de 
Bagnes affords many very interesting examples of this kind. It may be 
sufficient to mention the contrast between Lourtier which, at a height 
of 1054 metres (3458 ft.), has many fruit-trees (cherries) and a 
considerable extent of cultivated ground, while at Fionnay at 1497 
metres (4911 ft.) in the next basin, the fruit-trees have disappeared, and 
cultivation was represented in 1906, apart from the hay, by a tiny 
patch of wretched potatoes, and a handful of what the hotel proprietors 
optimistically regard as salad plants. 

II. — The Woods of the Valais.^ 

The Valais is relatively well-wooded. According to Uetricht (cf. 
footnote, p. 171), 15*9 per cent, of the total area of the upper basin of 
the Rhone is covered by forest. The four Highland counties of Ross and 
Cromarty, Sutherland, Inverness and Argyll, on the other hand, have only 

1 Cf. article by Prince Roland Bonaparte, La Giographie, xi. (1905), pp. 'AV^-IQ. 

2 Annales de Oeographie, xv. (1906), p. 347. 

3 See especially Christ, Das Pflnnzenleben der Sckweiz ; Zuricli, 1882. Die Zirhe, 
G. G. Simony, Jahrhuch d. oesterreichischen Alpe)i-Verei7ies,vi. (1870), and Lebensgesclnchte 
d. Blutenjyjlanzen Mitteleuropas, von Kirchner, Loew u. Schroter ; Stuttgart, 1901-5. 




3'4 per cent, of woods. In view of the emphasis which has been already 
laid on the mountainous nature of the Valais, it is hardly necessary to 
state that the woods are predominantly coniferous in type. Of the wood- 
forming deciduous trees of Switzerland, the beech, as the accompanying 
map shows, occupies a relatively small part of the canton. As mentioned 
above, it practically occurs only in the lower part of the Rhone valley, 
where the necessary conditions of moisture obtain. Accompanying the 
beech in the lower part of the Rhone valley, and also in parts of the 
lateral valleys, such non-forest-forming deciduous trees as elm, maple, 
linden, etc., occur. Very striking to those accustomed to the Scottish 
Highlands is the virtual absence of the birch. Like the Scotch fir, the 

The Wood.s of the Valais (modified from Christ). 

birch is not totally absent, but like the latter also it suffers severely from 
competition with other species, more tolerant of shade. It is the absence 
of competitors which largely determines the predominance of both 
species in the Highlands. 

Another deciduous tree which forms woods of some extent in parts 
of the Valais is the chestnut, whose distribution is also illustrated in the 
map. As Christ points out, the character of the trees and of their fruit, 
as compared with the trees and fruit of Italian specimens, shows that the 
conditions in the Valais are not altogether favourable to the species, and 
its range is limited. 

Very different from the small area occupied by deciduous woods is 
that covered by the dominant conifers. A considerable number of indi- 
genous conifers occur in Switzerland, but those which are most important 
as forest-formers in the Valais are three in number. First and by far 


the most important is the spruce tir {Picea excelsa, Lk.) ; mingled Avith 
this, especially near its upward limit, is the larch (Larix eumpaea, D.C.) ; 
while above larch and spruce, especially on the Hanks of the great Monte 
Rosa group, grows the beautiful and interesting AroUa pine, the Arte or 
Zirhe of the Germans {Pinus cemhra, L.), which sometimes, as in the 
Zermatt valley, forms extensive woods. 

The Spruce. — Of these three trees the spruce, as every one knows, 
is widely distributed in Europe. Absent as an indigenous tree in Italy, 
Spain, and in Southern Europe generally, in the greater part of France, 
in Great Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, and part of the 
North German plain, it forms elsewhere one of the most important of 
the European forest trees, and is so abundant in Scandinavia as to 
receive the common name of Norway spruce. It is, however, also 
the most characteristic tree of the true Alps, its place on the lower ground 
of the Jura being largely taken by the silver fir. It is the " pine " of 
most popular descriptions of the Alps, and its heavy foliage and pendent 
cones may be recognised in most views of Alpine scenes. 

Its distribution over Europe is partly, but not wholly, determined by 
climate ; not wholly, for it is absent, for example, from Great Britain, 
although the climate of the west of Scotland is well suited to its needs, 
and in many parts of Britain it flourishes exceedingly when planted. In 
general, however, its distribution may be said to be determined by the 
fact that it is intolerant of great heat, though resistant to cold, and that 
it demands a considerable amount of moisture during the growing season. 
According to Purkyne, it must have a mean July temperature of at least 
+ 10° C, but not exceeding 187° C, and the mean January must not fall 
below — 125° C. According to Kerner, the annual isotherm of r6° C. 
marks its upward limit. In parts of Switzerland, however, according 
to Schroter and Kirchner, it grows where the mean annual temperature 
falls much below 1*6° C. It ig in consequence of these necessary condi- 
tions of temperature that it is a mountain tree in those parts of Central 
Europe in which it occurs, and a plain-dweller in the northern parts of 
its range. But in Central Europe generally its extension downwards 
from the mountains towards the low ground is limited not wholly by 
climate, but in part by the fact that it there comes into competition with 
the more highly evolved deciduous trees. Its extension up the slopes 
is, on the other hand, chiefly determined by the meteorological conditions. 
According to Jaccard, it ascends in the Valais to a mean height of 2000 
metres (6562 ft.), with a maximum height of 2210 metres (7251 ft.). 
But in the Valais, according to Imhof,i ^\^q mean height to which woods 
ascend is 2150 metres (7054 ft. ), with a maximum of about 2300 metres 
(7546 ft.). It is thus obvious that in some cases the spruce must itself 
form the tree limit, and at worst it leaves but a narrow band unoccupied 
which may be taken advantage of by the larch and Arolla pine. 

Its upward extension is limited by the temperature range already 
mentioned, and the tree further requires, as already stated, a moist 

1 Die Waldgrenze in der Schxoei::, von E. Imhof. Beit rage zur Geophysik, iv. (1899-90), 


atmosphere. Because of its needs in regard to warmth and moisture, we 
find in the Swiss Alps that all exposures are not equally favourable. 
Thus it rises higher on a slope facing south-west or south than on one 
facing north-east or north. As its wide horizontal range indicates, it 
is tolerant of very varied types of soil, but will not thrive on very poor 
or dry ground. As regards life-history, it is sufficient to quote from 
Schroter and Kirchner's monograph some facts about the rate of growth. 

View near Fionnay, Yal de Hagnes. 'J'lie \vni»U are spruce, iiiin 
alder in foreground Ijy the stream. 

witli larcli ; 

For the first ten years of existence this is slow, the average height 
at the end of the period being only 1|-U metres (4-5 ft.). From 
the tenth year the rate of growth increases until it attains a maximum 
at forty to fifty years, the average height at forty being 9 metres (29i ft.). 
After the fiftieth year the rate of growth gradually declines. Seed pro- 
duction commences when the tree is between thirty and forty years old, 
and seeds are not abundantly produced until it is about fifty. As a 
general rule a rich harvest of seed only appears once in three years. As 
will be shown later, though the rate of growth appears slow and the 



power of reproduction late in appearing, yet the Arolla pine contrasts 
unfavourably with the spruce in these respects. 

The spruce appears in a considerable number of forms, according to 
the special conditions of life. One of these is specially interesting 
because of its frequency. In the Alps, especially near grazing grounds, 
it is very common to see spruces like that shown in the accompanying 
photograph. In these forms there is no leader, a very short leader, or 

Spruce, with the leader ile.stroyed by goats ; profuse branching has occurred below. 

several small leaders. The tree has a bush-shape, and displays a number 
of branches, almost prostrate on the ground, and some rooting in the 
ground. These forms, which may be of considerable age in spite of 
their small size, are produced as a result of injury by grazing animals. 
These bite off the leader in the young tree. As a result copious lateral 
branching takes place, the lateral branches lying close to the ground. 
After a time these lateral branches form a hedge round the centre, which 
is thus efficiently protected from further injury. One or more branches 
then take on the function of leader, and shoots up suddenly, with the 


result that the ordinary form is more or less perfectly re-acquired. 
Other forms may be produced by constant injury from snow or ava- 
lanches. The spruce, in spite of the downward droop of its branches, 
must, on account of its heavy foliage, be vevy liable to injury from snow, 
and it is often interesting in a fir-clad valley to notice that those parts 
which from the shape of the cliffs above must be avalanche-swept in 
winter are bare of trees, while the neighbouring parts are luxuriantly 

The Larch} — As compared with the spruce the larch differs not only 
in appearance, but also in many other respects. "While the spruce has a 
wide distribution, the larch of Europe has a very limited one. It is in 
essence an inhabitant of the Alps and the Carpathians, and is indigenous 
only in a narrow band of mountainous country, stretching from the 
Dauphiny in the west to the vicinity of Kronstadt in Transylvania in 
the east. Like not a few other conifers, it had formerly a more exten- 
sive distribution, and even in the area to which it is native it is suffer- 
ing from the competition of the dominant spruce. In the Dauphiny, 
where the spruce reaches its limit, in the Monte Eosa district, and in 
the Engadine, the larch forms extensive woods, but elsewhere it largely 
occurs in the form of specimens scattered through the spruce woods. 
In the Dauphiny it ascends to its maximum height of 2500 metres, and 
in the Zermatt valley trees, as distinct from woods, occur up to the 
2400 metre (7874 ft.) line. In view of these facts of distribution two 
questions arise — why can the larch not compete with the spruce on the 
lower slopes? and how is it that it replaces the spruce in the upper 
region, as for example at Zermatt 1 It is in the necessary conditions of 
existence of larch and spruce that the answer is found to both questions. 

First, as regards temperature: — the larch can grow where the 
mean annual temperature is only— 1° C. so that it is more resistant to 
cold than the spruce. On the other hand, it cannot thrive if the mean 
annual temperature exceeds 10^ C. As it sheds its leaves in winter, 
severe cold does not greatly affect it, and it appears to demand a 
winter's rest of at least four months. On the other hand, as the needles 
are more delicate in structure than those of the spruce, they are very 
liable to be injured by a cold spring. The larch, in short, is fitted for a 
continental climate, a cold winter, and a sudden hot summer, with but 
little intervening spring. The high ground suits it best, for there it is 
not tempted to put forAvard its leaves until winter has finally taken its 
departure. It requires less moisture than the spruce, for its root system 
is better developed, and it thus obtains water from a larger area. Again, 
the shape of the tree and the deciduous leaves minimise the risk of 
injury from snow, which cannot lie on the slender branches. The com- 
bination of the above peculiarities make it easy to understand why the 
larch can grow at elevations which are impossible for the spruce. 
Why is it that the lower ground is less suited to it, and that here 
the si»ruce gains the mastery ? One important point is that the larch 
must have a large amount of light at all stages of growth. The young 

1 See Lebensgeschichte d. Blutenjyflanzen Mitteleuropcis, vou Kirchner, Loew u. Schroter. 


spruce is tolerant of shade, but the larch at all stages of growth must 
have full exposure to sunlight. One consequence of this is that in a 
larch wood the trees stand well apart, while in a spruce wood they stand 
close together. If we suppose that in such a wood a few spruces are 
introduced, then it will be found that the shade which prevents the 
larch seedlings from growing does no harm to the spruce seedlings, and 
thus if the other conditions are favourable to the spruce it will more and 
more predominate, and more and more produce a degree of shade 
throughout the Avood which will absolutely prevent the natural repro- 
duction of the larch. The handicap in favour of the spruce is, however, 
somewhat diminished by the fact that the larch grows much faster. In 
the ten years which it takes the spruce to grow about a metre and a 
half (4-9 ft.) the larch seedling has grown about ih metres (14| ft.) 
that is in youth it grows three times as fast. Though the rate of 
growth diminishes in later life, yet at forty the larch can show a height 
of nearly 20 metres (65| ft.) as against the 9 metres (29i ft.) of the 

The result is that where the meteorological conditions are quite 
unsuited to the spruce the larch in the Valais forms pure woods — 
why this is specially true of the Valais and Engadine we shall see 
later. Where the conditions favour the spruce we shall find woods 
composed for the most part of that species, but with an admixture of 
larch wherever local conditions handicap the dominant species. Thus, 
if a particular spot is much exposed to snowdrifts, the larch will thrive 
better than the spruce because of its shape. If the place is storm-swept, 
the better root development of the larch is in its favour. So with dry- 
ness of the soil, which checks the growth of the spruces and allows the 
larches to take advantage of their quicker growth to get beyond the 
upas-like influence of their neighbours. This being the case, it is easy to 
understand that the fact that the larch is usually found at considerable 
elevations is not wholly due to its preference for these heights, but is in 
part the result of the difficulty which it has in competing with the spruce 
on the lower ground. Such facts as that it occurs at a height of 423 
metres (1387 ft.) at Martigny show that its infrequence at low levels in 
the Valais is not altogether to be ascribed to its special peculiarities, but 
is in fact a result of the Struggle for Existence. On the other hand, the 
fact that it does not occur till a height of 1100 metres (3609 ft.) at 
Sion is probably due to a climatic cause ; cf what has been said above as 
to the climate of this region. 

(To he continued.) 


By Lionel W. Hixxman, B.A., F.R.S.E. 

(JFith Map and Diagrams.) 

Unlike the Spey and other large streams of the north-east coast south of 
the Moray Firth — livers of simple type in which the tributaries are 
throughout distinctly subordinate to the main stream — the Beauly and 
the Conon are examples of a complex river system, formed of several 
large streams nearly equal in length and volume, and confluent at a 
comparatively short distance above the river mouth. 

This character is most marked in the case of the Beauly, and is 
indeed apparent in the nomenclature of the river system. The Affric, 
the Cannich, and the Farrar, streams of almost equal volume, unite to 
form the river Glass, which at some indeterminate point in its course 
between Struy and Eilean Aigas ceases to bear that name and flows to 
the sea as the Beauly River.^ 

The apparent redundancy in the name Glen Strath Farrar now 
given to the valley of the Farrar, may possibly be accounted for when 
we remember that the Beauly Firth was the jEstuarium Vararum of the 
early geographers, the estuary of the Yarar — that name being evidently 
applied to the whole of the Farrar-Beauly river. The lower and wider 
portion of the valley would then be the Strath — the upper section, above 
Struy, the Glen — of the Farrar. \Yhen in later times the name Farrar 
ceased to be given to the river below Struy, and that portion of the 
valley became merged in Strath Glass, the name Glen Strath Farrar 
remained to indicate the " glen " portion of the vanished Strath Farrar. 

The Beauly. 

The Beauly river system falls naturally into four well-defined 

1. The mountain valley section. This includes the torrent heads, 
the lake basins, and the lower courses of the Aff'ric, the Cannich, and 
the Farrar. The last two of these flow in a direction transverse to the 
general " graining " of the country, while the trend of the Aff'ric is 

2. The flat valley track, represented by the course of the river 
Glass, longitudinal between Fasnakyle and Erchless, and transverse from 
Erchless to Eilean Aigas. 

3. The gorges of Eilean Aigas, the Druim, and Kilmorack. 

4. The lower course of the Beauly, between the foot of the gorges 
and the sea. 

It is unnecessary to trace in detail the courses of each of these streams, 
as they can be followed on the map. Some figures, however, may be 

1 The whole stream belo^v the mouth of the Farrar is often called the river Beauly ; 
but, on the other hand, Strath Glass is generally considered to extend to the head of the 
gorge at Eilean Aigas. 


useful in order to give an idea of the relative pro^Dortions of the different 
sections of the river system. The area of the entire basin is approxi- 
mately 407 square miles, the greater part of which is high mountain 
ground. The watershed lies within a few miles of the western seaboard, 
the sources of the Affric, Cannich, and Farrar being distant respectively 
5, 7^, and 7J- miles from the salt water of Lochs Duich and Carron. 
The lengths of the component streams, measured along the principal 
windings, and including the lochs through which they pass, are as 
follows. The Affric to Fasnakyle, 21 miles; the Cannich, 24 miles; 
the Farrar, 28 miles; the Glass from Fasnakyle to Eilean Aigas, 16 
miles ; the Beauly from Eilean Aigas to Tarradale, lOi miles. The total 
length of the Affric-Glass- Beauly is therefore 47^r miles, of the Cannich- 
Glass-Beauly 48, and of the Farrar-Glass-Beauly 44-J miles. 

Section 1. — Resembling one another in the physiographical character 
of their basins, and in the causes which have controlled the evolution 
of their valleys, the Affric, Cannich, and Farrar differ only in the extent 
to which each has graded its course. They are essentially immature 
rivers ; that is to say the fall from source to mouth is unequally dis- 
tributed over their course, so that the profiles, shown in the accompany- 
ing diagram, depart largely from the smooth curve of a perfectly graded 

Each of these rivers presents a succession of lake basins, or stretches 
in which the local base-level of erosion has been approximately reached, 
succeeded by rock barriers which usually correspond to constrictions of 
the valley, and are in most cases due to hard and less easily eroded 
bands of rock. 

The grading process has reached the furthest stage in the Farrar. 
The rock barriers along the course of that river have been to a consider- 
able extent cut through, so that gorges and rapids, rather than waterfalls, 
mark the successive steps in the fall of the valley. A further effect of 
this partial lowering of the barriers is seen in the draining of former 
lakes, such as that represented by the wide alluvial flat below Broulin 
Lodge ; and the lowering of the Avaters of the existing lochs indicated by 
the terraces which surround Loch Mhuilinn and Loch Bunacharan, and 
mark the former level of their waters. In Glen Cannich we find an 
earlier stage of valley grading. Here the chain of lochs is strung so 
closely on the river thread that of the 18 miles of its course — neglecting 
the torrent head — nearly 8 miles are through lochs, and the connecting 
links of river, between Loch Lungard and Loch na Cloiche, Loch Mullar- 
doch and Loch Sealbhag, only a few hundred yards in length. The 
erosion of the successive rock barriers is less advanced than on the 
Farrar, and the waters of almost all the higher lochs escape either over 
a fall or down a steep rapid little less than a fall. Only in the lower 
part of the glen has the river cut back sufficiently to produce a gorge 
such as that below Loch Craskie, and lower to some extent the waters 
of the loch above. The higher lochs show no signs of shrinkage, but 
terraces marking a slightly higher level are found round Lochs Sealbhag, 
Car, and Craskie. 

The profile of the Affric is of a still simpler character. The 


total fall of the river to Fasuakyle is 2530 feet, of which 1850 feet 
takes place along the five-mile course of the mountain torrent above 
Alltbeath. The remaining fall of 680 feet is v€ry unequally distributed 
over a course of 19 miles. Nine miles of this distance, from the head of 
the silted-up portion of Loch AfFric to Achagate below Loch Beinn a' 
Mheadhoin, is practically a lake basin, with a fall only of 40 feet in the 
short length of stream above Loch na Laghan ; and of the remaining 
480 feet the river drops 310 feet in the 1| miles which include the 
Dog Falls, the Badger Falls, and the connecting rapids. This sudden 
drop in level is represented on the profile diagrams by the steepening of 
the curve between the 20th and 25th mile, a feature which is most 
strongly marked on the AfFric, less so on the Cannich, and is com- 
paratively smoothed on the Farrar. This sudden steepening of the 
gradient corresponds more or less closely in each valley with the out- 
crop of a belt of gneissose rocks, much folded and resting at high angles. 
It may, therefore, be due to the superior resisting power of these rocks 
compared with those at the mouth of the valleys, while it is possible 
that the latter may have been more or less shattered by a line of 
fracture which passes along Strath Glass, and thus rendered more subject 
to erosion. 

An over-deepening of the upper part of Strath Glass with regard to 
the tributary valleys might also be suggested as a cause of the sudden 
drop at the foot of Glen Affric, which might thus be regarded as a 
hanging valley. It is, however, difficult to suppose that a volume of 
ice passed into the head of Strath Glass larger than that which must 
have descended from the wide extent of lofty mountain ground that 
surrounds the upper portions of Glen Affric and Glen Cannich. 

Before passing to the next section, some interesting points in the 
earlier history of the Farrar may be referred to. 

Of the two streams which fall into the head of Loch Monar, the 
Amhainn an-t-Sratha Mhoir or Strathmore river has now the greater 
volume, and may be regarded as the real head of the river Farrar. The 
other, the Allt Loch Calavie, flows for the greater part of its course 
through a chain of lochs lying in a wide level valley, which heads up to 
the main watershed of the country at a point where it is only 865 feet 
above sea-level. The low drift-covered col rises but a few feet above 
the stream on the western side of the watershed, a tributary of the river 
Ling, and the flat marshy valley of the Allt an Loinfhiodha as far 
down as the foot of Loch Cruoshie is clearly a continuation of the 
hollow by which the eastern drainage now passes through the Gead 
Lochs into Loch Monar. The stream below Loch Cruoshie is rapidly 
eroding its present steep gorge, and it is evident that since glacial times 
it has cut back eastwards sufiiciently to rob the headwaters of the Farrar 
of the volume represented by the three burns which now flow into Loch 

The gorge of the Garbh Uisge below Monar Lodge is a recent post- 
glacial portion of the river channel. Its earlier course, occupied at a 
time when the valley south of Beinn na Muice was probably blocked 
with ice, lay through the hollow between Loch Bad na h'Achlaise and the 


Uisge Misgeach. Other higher channels occupied by the river during 
former stages of the grading of its course can be detected immediately- 
above Ardchuilk, at the level of the road between Lochs Mhuilinn and 
Bunacharan, and again at the roadside half a mile below Deannie 

The bathymetry of Loch Monar and of most of the other lochs 
mentioned in this paper has been fully discussed in the Reports of the 
Scottish Lake Survey published from time to time in the pages of this 
Magazine.^ It will therefore be sufficient to say that all or nearly all 
these lochs occupy rock-basins, though, in some instances, their waters 
are partially held up by drift or alluvial deposits. Ice has in every case 
been the principal eroding agent, and the powerful fault which crosses 
Loch Monar in an oblique direction has probably played an important 
part, as a line of weakness, in the evolution of that loch. The smaller 
lochs are all of comparatively recent origin, and may be regarded as 
only transient features, that under present conditions are being slowly 
obliterated by the grading of the river valleys. 

Section 2. — Between Fasnakyle and Erchless the river Glass occupies 
a straight, trench-like, longitudinal valley, whose trend has been deter- 
mined by a line of fault. The fall of the valley floor from Invercannich 
to Struy, a distance of 6| miles, is only 15 feet ; the stream has graded its 
course, and now winds in sluggish curves, with here and there an " ox- 
bow "lake representing a former " cut-off," through a deep deposit of 
silt, sand, and fine gravel. 

There is little doubt that this portion of the valley is a waste-filled 
basin, at one time occupied by a narrow glen-lake comparable on a small 
scale with Loch Ness, and like it, developed along a XXE.-SSW. line 
of fracture and consequent weakness. The waters of this lake probably 
extended to the head of the gorge at Eilean Aigas and were gradually 
drained by the erosion of the rock barrier below, while the higher 
reaches Avere being silted up with the material brought down by the 
mountain streams. 

At Eilean Aigas the character of the river completely changes. The 
wide haughlands and sweeping curves of the Glass give place to the 
picturesque gorges through which the Beauly rushes in alternating fall 
and rapid amid the beautiful scenery of the Druim and Kilmorack. 
These gorges have been cut deep into the Old Red Sandstone conglomerate, 
and in places even reach the underlying floor of metamorphic rock. 

A feature common to most of the rivers that fall into the Moray 
Firth is the abnormal steepening of the lower part of their course, 
generally at or near the point where they breach the inner or landward 
margin of the Old Red Sandstone belt. 

In a former paper on the Spey - I have attributed this phenomenon, 
which is particularly well marked in the case of that river, to the 
rejuvenation produced by an uplift later than the deposition of the Old 
Red Sandstone. In the case of the Beauly it seems probable that the 
more recent uplift which raised the shore-line 100 feet above its present 

1 Vol. xxii. No. 9, 1906; vol. xxi., 1905. 

' "The River Spey," Scottish Geographical Magazine, April 1901. 


level was an important factor in the production of the lower gorges. 
The 100-feet beach, which forms a conspicuous feature along the 
shores of the Beauly Firth, can be traced to the mouth of the Kilmorack 
gorge, while the 100-feet contour-line crosses the river at Teanassie, 
more than a mile higher up. It is evident that erosion must have been 
largely accelerated on the down-stream side of the uplift by the steepen- 
ing of the gradient. 

At the mouth of the Kilmorack gorge the Beauly enters the final 
section of its course, and flowe gently over a wide alluvial plain to the 
sea. Above the village of Beauly the river is eroding the marine deposits 
of the successive raised beaches, while below it pushes out into the head 
of the Beauly Firth an ever-advancing delta of silt and mud, closely 
similar to the estuarine shelly clays that extend far up the valley of the 
Conon to the limit of the 100-foot beach. 

The course of the Beauly between Eilean Aigas and the sea is entirely 
postglacial. An earlier preglacial channel is indicated by the hollow 
of Lonbuie, which runs from Eskadale through Fanellan to Beaufort 
Castle. The higher part of this hollow is now deeply filled with boulder 
clay, the lower portion with alluvial sand and gravel. From Beaufort the 
river probably flowed through the low-lying tract of ground occupied by 
the now drained Moniack Moss to the sea between Clunes and Lentran.^ 

Having thus discussed in more or less detail the courses of the 
streams that form the present Beauly river system, it remains to 
consider briefly the earlier history of its development. 

It seems probable that the Farrar, Cannich, and Aff"ric represent the 
headwaters of a consequent easterly-flowing river system developed on 
the original surface of the Old Red Sandstone plateau, which we know 
from the outlying fragments of that formation found far up the inland 
valleys, must at one time have covered the eastern side of the watershed 
up to a height of at least 2500 feet above present sea-level. 

A study of the map shows the significant manner in which the wide 
valley of Glen Urquhart and Corrimony heads up to a well-marked 
depression in the eastern wall of Strath Glass, directly opposite to the 
mouth of Glen Cannich, and continues the line of that glen eastwards to 
Loch Ness. It is therefore not unreasonable to supjiose that Glen 
Urquhart once formed part of the course of a large eastward-flowing 
river, whose head-waters were captured by a longitudinal stream at 
the time when the removal of the Old Red Sandstone covering by 
denudation brought into play the features of an earlier drainage system, 
and diverted the confluent waters of the Cannich and the Afi'ric into 
the pre-Old-Red-Sandstone valley of Strath Glass. 

The Farrar-Glass-Beauly still preserves more or less its easterly 
course, but the lower part of the valley has been largely modified by 
subsequent events, and in earlier times the river probably flowed over 
a plain of Old Red Sandstone that occupied the position of the Beauly 
Firth, discharging its waters into the Moray Firth far to the eastward of 
the present shores of the Black Isle. 

1 As suggested by Mr. Wallace in his article " Geological Changes in the Moray Firth." 
Trans. Inverness Scientific Soc, vol. ii. p. 384. 



sjioj uotJin^ 

The Conox. 

The upper part of the Conon river system is 
composed of the Meig and the stream which flows 
through Loch Luichart. The name Conon is first 
given to the river where it issues from that loch, 
the stream that flows into the head of the loch 
being known as the Bran, It is, however, signi- 
ficant that the Meig valley, which continues the 
line of the valley of the Conon below their junc- 
tion, bears the name of Strathconon, and it would 
seem more fittiug that the name Bran should be 
extended to the confluence of the Loch Luichart 
stream with the Meig, the name Conon being re- 
stricted to the united waters below that point. A 
Gaelic verse, quoted by Mr. Watson in his ex- 
cellent work on the place-names of Ross and 
Cromarty, has reference to this anomaly : — 

" Abhainn Mig tre Srath-chomiinn, 
Abhainn Conuinn tre Srath-bhrainn, 
Abhaiun Dabh-chuileagach tre Srath-ghairbh ; 
Tri abnaicheau gun tairbh iad sin." 

" The River Meig through Strath Conon, 
The River Couon through Strathbran, 
The River of black nooks through Strathgarve ; 
Three rivers without profit these." 

At Contin (the confluence) the river is joined 
by its most important tributary, the Blackwater, 
and four miles above its mouth receives on the 
right bank the waters of the Orrin. The area of 
the Conon drainage basin approximates to 483 
square miles. The lengths of the various sections 
are as follows : the Meig, 241 miles ; the Bran, 
to the foot of the Meig, 26| miles; the Bran- 
Conon, 38| miles; and the Meig-Conon, 36i 
miles. The principal tributaries of the lower 
river, the Blackwater and Orrin, measure respec- 
tively 28 and 23 miles in length. 

The mountain torrent which forms the head- 
waters of the Bran-Conon rises at a height of 
1500 feet on the slopes of Carn Breac, at a point 
only 9 miles distant from the salt Avater of Loch 
Torridon, and falls 1000 feet in its course of 5 
miles to the head of Loch a' Chroisg (Rosque). 
ii. § o § S t ° Issuing from the loch as the river Bran, the stream 

is cutting through the high-level terraces of sand and gravel which are seen 
on either side of the railway a short distance to the west of Achnasheen 
station. These represent, as pointed out by Dr. Penck of Vienna, 


and further described by Dr. B, N, Peach, delta deposits laid down in an 
ancient lake, which was held up by masses of ice lying in the valley 
to the east and south of the present junction of the Bran with the 
stream flowing out of Loch Gown. 

From Achnasheen the river winds eastwards with a gentle fall 
through the grassy alluvial stretches of Strathbran, its straighter 
course immediately above Dosmuckeran indicating a steeper gradient 
where the stream leaves the floodplain and has cut a shallow gorge 
through the flagstones at the foot of Druim Dubh. Below Dosmuckeran 
the river meanders in sluggish curves between high banks of sand and 
clay through a flat stretch of meadow land. This alluvial flat is the 
silted-up head of a large loch, now represented only by the shallow reedy 
waters of Loch Achanalt and Loch Cuilinn. Li addition to the filling up 
of this earlier lake by the stream at its head, its waters were lowered by 
the cutting back of the rock barrier below Loch Cuilinn, and the latter 
loch separated from Loch Achanalt, the former connection of the two 
lakes being plainly indicated by the continuous terraces that can be 
traced around them both. After leaving Loch Cuilinn the Bran passes 
in rapids and small waterfalls over a series of rock barriers, above each 
of which the stream expands into a wide reach of comparatively still 
water, and falls 110 feet to Loch Luichart in a distance a little less than 
two miles. A mile above that loch it is joined by the Grudie river, which 
drains Loch Fannich and the southern slopes of the Fannich mountains. 
This is a rapid rocky stream, and falls 460 feet in the last 3^^ miles of 
its short course from the loch. The bathymetry of Loch Luichart 
presents some interesting features, which are fully discussed in the 
Report of the Scottish Lake Survey on the lakes of the Conon basin. ^ 
It may, however, be pointed out that the abnormal depth found close 
to the head of the loch is probably due in great measure to the powerful 
wrench-fault which here crosses the lake. The eff"ect of this line of 
movement would be to shatter and disintegrate the rock and thus 
increase the erosive eff"ect of the moving ice at this point. 

The most prominent feature in the profile of the Bran-Conon, below 
Loch a' Chroisg, is the sudden drop below Loch Luichart, where, in a 
distance of just under a mile, the river falls 1.30 feet between the rock- 
lip of the loch at the Falls of Conon and the mouth of the gorge at 
Little Scatwell. It is noticeable that the Falls of Conon occupy an 
almost exactly similar position with regard to the loch above and 
gorge below as do the Rogie Falls on the Blackwater river, referred to in 
the sequel. The erosion of the Loch Luichart barrier has, however, not 
yet been sufficient to lower appreciably the waters of the loch above and 
produce a marginal terrace as is the case with Loch Garve. 

The course of the Meig is less varied than that of its sister stream 
the Bran. Rising at a height of 1200 feet at the head of Gleann 
Fhiodhaig, it runs with a fairly even fall of 730 feet in 9 miles to 
Scardroy at the head of Loch Beannachan. Here a partially eroded 
barrier of Lewisian gneiss crosses the stream and forms a waterfall, 

1 "Lochs of the Conon Basin," Scottish Geographiail Magazine, vol. xxi. p. 467, 1905. 


while openings in the barrier at higher levels with corresponding 
terraces mark former courses of the stream. 

The waters of Loch Beannachan lie in a hollow due to erosion along 
a line of fault that can be traced westwards to Loch Maree. 

The Meig issues from Loch Beannachan through a deep accumula- 
tion of fluvio-glacial sand and gravel, which to some extent holds up the 
waters of the loch ; and rock is first met with in the bed of the stream 
a mile below the outlet. Between Inbhirchorainn and Milltown of 
Strathconon the river runs NNE. and nearly at right angles to its 
higher course through a straight caiion-like valley, whose lofty and pre- 
cipitous eastern Avail of shattered and reddened rock forms one of the 
most striking features in the scenery of Strathconon. This valley has been 
determined by a powerful line of dislocation which can be traced for a 
great distance through the counties of Ross and western Inverness, with a 
trend parallel to that of the faults which have determined the Great Glen 
and the upper part of Strath Glass. This Strathconon fault has already 
been mentioned as crossing the head of Loch Luichart. At Milltown 
the Meig leaves the fault-valley and resumes its normal easterly course 
with a fairly even fall through Strathconon. For a distance of half 
a mile above Little Scatwell the gradient is less matured, and the 
stream struggles in a deep and narrow gorge through the siliceous flag- 
stones of Torr a Bhealaich. 

Issuing from their respective gorges at Little Scatwell, the Meig and 
Bran enter a wide flood plain, through which their waters, united in the 
Conon river, flow to a point below Comrie where the valley is again 
constricted, and a band of siliceous rock crossing the stream has pro- 
duced a low waterfall and rock gorge below. 

The next steep drop in the gradient is found at the Muirton Falls 
just above Newton, where the Conon encounters the coarse breccia of 
Old Red Sandstone age which forms Torr Achilty. The fall or steep rapid 
caused by the outcrop of this hard conglomerate is succeeded by a 
stretch of a mile in which the river flows swiftly over a floor of gently 
inclined grey shales and flagstones. These rocks are on the same 
horizon as the bods from which are derived the mineral waters of 
Strathpeff"er, and several sulphureous springs rise from the river bed 
near Clachuile Inn, but are only exposed when the water is at a low 
summer level. 

The insignificance of the Muirton gorge as compared with that cut by 
the Beauly river through the Old Red Sandstone at Kilmorack is remark- 
able, but may be explained by the fact that a fault here crosses the 
river, bringing the shales and flagstones into contact with the lowest 
portion of the basal conglomerate. The Conon has therefore had an 
easier task in eroding its channel through these softer rocks than the 
Beauly on its three-mile course through the hard conglomerates of 
Kilmorack and the Druim. 

It may be pointed out that here again the limit of the 100-feet 
raised beach coincides very nearly with the head of the gorge at Toir 
Achilty. Near Muirton Mains finely laminated blue shelly clays of 
estuarine character are found up to the 100-feet level, and upon these 


appear to rest the moraines that mark the last retreat of the valley 
glacier up Strathcouon. 

From Torr Achilty to the sea the Conon flows through a wide 
alluvial plain, eroding the marine deposits of the raised beaches, and at 
the same time laying down its own load of material. At Moy Bridge 
it receives the waters of the Blackwater, and a short digression must 
now be made to describe the salient points in the course of this im- 
portant tributary. 

There are many points in similarity between the physiography of 
the Blackwater and that of the Conon, and these have been determined 
by closely similar causes. The three large streams which form the head- 
waters of the river under consideration — the Glascarnoch and the 
streams which &ow through Strath Vaich and Strath Rannoch — each 
present in some part of its course the usual alternation of lake or 
drained and silted-up lake-basin with rock gorge through which the 
stream is eroding the determining barrier below. 

Two mountain torrents, draining the southern slopes of Beinn Dearg 
and the northern corries of the Fannich range, unite a short distance 
east of the low flat watershed to form the Glascarnoch river. It is, 
however, evident that the waters of Loch Droma and the Allt 
a' Mhadaidh, which now flow westwards to Loch Broom, have been 
stolen from the Blackwater basin by the river Broom, which has cut back 
more rapidly than the gently graded upper portion of the Glascarnoch 
stream. The flat alluvial stretch, some four miles in length, above 
Aultguish Inn is evidently the bed of a glen lake filled up with the 
detritus brought down by the hill streams, and drained by the erosion 
of a barrier mainly formed by the belt of foliated granite which crosses 
the valley above Inchbae. 

Below Strath Vaich the valley gradient steepens, and the river falls 
430 feet in seven miles to Gortin, at the head of the alluvial flat which 
represents the silted-up head of Loch Garve. This loch has also been 
drained to a considerable extent by the lowering of the rock barrier at 
the Falls of Rogie, and the conspicuous terraces round the southern part 
of the loch show the former extent of its waters. 

A high terrace of sand and gravel extends from the mouth of the 
rock gorge eroded by the river below the Rogie Falls to the entrance of 
the hollow occupied by Loch Achilty, whose waters are to a large extent 
held up by deep alluvial deposits. There are indications that at an 
earlier period, when the lower part of the valley was possibly blocked 
with ice, the water may have passed through this hollow, which connects 
the valleys of the Blackwater and the Conon. 

Two miles below the confluence of these rivers the waters of the 
Orrin pour in from the south, over a delta of coarse alluvial deposits, 
through channels that shift with every heavy flood. The course of the 
Orrin through its wild mountain valley presents no features of special 
interest. The fall of the stream, 1200 feet, is fairly evenly distributed 
over its course of 23 miles, but is on the whole greater in the portion 
below Camban. Loch na Caoidhe, at the head of the valley, occupies a 
rock basin, and the graded stretch that extends for a mile and a half 



below Am Fiar Loch represents the former extent of that piece of 
water. The Orrin Falls are due to the outcrop of a band of con- 
glomerate, greater in resisting power than the softer shales and flag- 
stones below. 

Like the Beauly, the Conon was at an early period of its history 
developed on the eastward slope of a plateau of Old Eed Sandstone and, 
possibly, Secondary rocks, but does not appear to have been modified 
to the same extent by the reassertion of earlier surface features, and 
still preserves to a large extent its original consequent course. 
It is possible, however, that the southward bend of the Blackwater 
between Garbad and Garve was determined by the high ground of An 
Cabar and Little Wyvis, and that the pass between those mountains 
indicates an earlier eastward line of drainage. 

The lower course of the Conon, like that of the Beauly, Avas con- 
tinued over the Old Red Sandstone plain far to the eastwards of its 
present mouth, and, as has been suggested by Mr. Hugh Miller,^ the 
opening between the Sutors of Cromarty may have been eroded by the 
river as it cut its way down through the softer strata by which the 
gneiss of the Sutors was deeply covered. 


These two volumes aie clear testimony that the importance of West 
Africa to the student of ethnology is being recognised. Ultimately both 
deal with the same subject. They are earnest attempts to discover the 
first principles of the religion of the "West African native. Major Leonard, 
in a large volume of 560 pages, has given us the result of over ten years' 
study of the tribes in Southern Nigeria, and Mr. Dennett has been 
reaching forward to the conclusions he arrives at, during a stay of nearly 
thirty years on " the Coast." Both volumes are intensely interesting, 
and what has to be said regarding their form had best be said first. 
The illustrations in Mr. Dennett's book are on the whole well done, and 
the signs given on p. 71 open up a subject that requires thorough 
investigation — that of the sign-writing used by the natives. L^^nfortun- 
ately Mr. Dennett overloads his pages with native terras that are very 
difficult to remember, and to read his book involves the retention in the 
mind of a goodly number of Bavili and Bini words. It is well that the 
proof-reading is nearly perfect and the index very full, though there are 
one or two omissions. On page 65 we have Mvumvuvu, and this is the 
form found in the index which contains no reference to pages 107-8, 
where the term is fully explained, and where it is printed Mvumvu??ivu. 
Likaida (p. 82) is printed Likawla (p. 84). Major Leonard's book is 

1 Transactions of the Inverness Scientific Society, 1885, vol. iii. p. 133. 

2 The Lower Niger and its Tribes. By Arthur Glyn Leonard (Macmillan, V2s. 6d. net), 
At the Back of the Black Man's Mind: or, Xotes on the Kingly Office in West Africa. By 
R. E. Dennett (MacmillaD, 10s. net). 


larger and much more diffuse. Misprints are more frequent, but I shall 
merely refer to some which occur in an interesting Appendix on the 
'• Grammatical Construction of Tongues." On page 507, Ja, to chew, 
should be Ta, as it is printed on page 512, where, however, tuka should 
be huta, and utaja should be utalia. On page 510 some use is made of 
diacritical marks in the word oydkhd, but no explanation is given any- 
where as to the meaning of these marks, and other words, usually written 
with them, do not receive them. On page 508 the first rule is badly 
stated, and the rule for comparison of adjectives is wrong, for etiakan 
does not mean "extremely good" but "better than " {lit. good past). It 
is a pity that these and a number of other mistakes have crept into this 
very interesting Appendix. The index is far too meagre, and it is quite 
impossible to locate many of the towns mentioned in the text on the 
antiquated map at the end of the volume. 

In both volumes insistence is rightly laid on the effect of environ- 
ment on the religious ideas of the natives. Major Leonard, in his 
opening chapters, gives a vivid description of Nigeria — a land baked 
and hard in the dry season, but swampy and malarial in the rains, and 
he seeks to trace the influence which these climatic changes and other 
natural phenomena had on the minds of the people. If there is less 
description in Mr. Dennett's book, it is not less necessary to keep before 
us as we read, a picture first of the Mayombe and Xiloango country and 
afterwards of the Benin Eiver District. The conclusions arrived at by 
these two investigators seem at first sight vastly different. Says Mr. 
Dennett, page 105, "In the last resort the Bavili are monists," and he 
afterwards on more than one occasion makes the same statement regard- 
ing the Bini, e.g. page 235, "We have noted that both the Bini and 
Bavili in the first place recognise God." He then finds amongst both 
peoples a distinction between things created and things procreated — the 
former connected with God, the latter with the Devil. He lays stress 
on the fact that the ultimate starting-point for all is God, but he admits 
(p. 166) that the idea of God prevalent to-day amongst the Bavili is 
very degenerate. Trade, especially the slave trade, and European mis- 
conceptions regarding their civilisation, have demoralised the people so 
that they do not to-day lay the stress they should and formerly did lay 
on God's part in the affairs of the world. Accordingly he arrives at 
Major Leonard's conclusion that for all practical purposes the natives 
to-day are dualists {Lower Niger, p. 129), though the latter does not 
think that Monism ever existed in Nigeria. 

Both writers rest their conclusions to a large extent on arguments 
of a philological character, and rightly so. But the study of West African 
languages is still in its infancy, and the conclusions drawn are sometimes 
hardly convincing. Thus Mr. Dennett pleads for Monism because every- 
thing is ultimately brought back to God — NzamU. But Nzamhi is not 
the causing First Principle. Though His name is singular in form, He 
contains the " essence of the forms," and has in Himself a male and 
female part (p. 167). It would seem quite probable that if the Bavili 
have fallen from Monism, they had originally fought their way to it 
from Polydemonism, or, to use Major Leonard's term, Naturism. 


It is only natural that whilst one who has tried to get at the heart 
of native ways of thought, and to observe native customs, finds much to 
agree with in both books, there should be many things that he does not 
agree with. I do not know the country that Mr. Dennett deals with, 
but I have had a good deal to do with several " Bini Boys." Major 
Leonard's observations have mostly been made on the Xiger amongst 
the Ibo people, but he has travelled through a great part of the country, 
and has gathered information from natives of all parts. Accordingly he 
feels justified in stating his conclusions broadly, making them apply to 
the whole of Nigeria. Thus he states, page 293, "Virtually, indeed, 
every household has its own priest in the person of the eldest son," and 
this statement is fully explained on page 395. Amongst the Efik and 
XJmon peoples on the Cross River I have not found it so. The head of 
the family is the priest for the family. Amongst polygamists there is 
often doubt as to who is the eldest born, and accordinglj', in these tribes 
at least, the father regards as his first-born the son of whose birth he 
hears first, even although, because of a slave's dilatoriness in carrying 
a message, or because of a child being born in a distant farm, he is really 
junior to another by several days. Further, the custom of the Nsibidi 
Society seems to me inconsistent with the position of the eldest son as 
priest. This society was suppressed in Duke Town in 1878 or 1879, 
but it was "out" in Creek Town in 1902, though it did no damage. 
Its members had the right on its " play " days to kill at sight the eldest 
son or daughter of any house whatsoever. Other children could walk 
the town with safety. It seems hardly possible that the people would 
submit to have their family priest in continual danger. Mr. Dennett 
does not seem to have found traces of this special sanctity of the eldest 
son, and facts like the above do not agree with it. 

Amongst the Bavili there does not seem to be any human sacrifice. 
At least no mention is made of it in At the Back of the Black Man's Mind. 
Major Leonard has a great deal that is interesting to say about it. 
Amons the Inokuns this religious rite was performed till after the Aro 
war, but now it has ceased. Indeed the custom was universal, and 
within the memory of man was practised even in Calabar. Some time 
a^^o I got a full account of the change from human to other sacrifices 
in connection witli an idem at Okpoko, a farm village near Ikunetu. 
Formerly there was sacrificed to this idem a light-coloured woman — 
owoafia. But — and this is an interesting part of the tradition — about 
forty years ago the idem itself said that this was not good, and told the 
people to bring other sacrifices. Accordingly a white cow was offered. 
Gradually the value of the sacrifice decreased, till at last it became merely 
one white egg. With this meagre offering the idem was offended and in 
1902 declared that no sacrifices save those that used to be offered would 
be accepted. The people understood this to involve a return to human 
sacrifice, and next day led a light-coloured woman to the sacred place and 
turned her face toward the idem. This was done to remind tlie idem that 
human sacrifice had been discontinued at its own command. Then were 
sacrificed " a white cow, a white fowl, a white tortoise, and many other 
animals, all white " Since then they have not sacrificed to the idem, nor 


planted in that place. So the idem is offended and has gone to another 
part. This is proved, because the tree in which the idem lived is dead, 
[n revenge for the way it has been treated, the idem has sent an ekpo 
(devil) to OkpiSko, and this el-po lies in wait for Ikunetu people going 
up-river and kills them — evidently the idem takes in this way the human 
sacrifice that was denied it. It is stated that many people from Ikunetu 
have lost their lives through this ekpo. 

I have told this story because it illustrates the power that the old 
killing customs still have over the minds of the people. Till these are 
got rid of, it seems hopeless to expect the people to make progress. 
Both Major Leonard and Mr. Dennett think that the hope for the future 
of the black man — Bantu and Negro — lies in the development of their 
customs. This is true if development involves the loss of a good deal 
that has grown up during the centuries and the retention only of Avhat 
is best in the customs of the people. Can this be done 1 Will it be 
that the native of Africa Avill lose his tribal exclusiveness and take a 
human view of life, and yet retain his present religious ideas? Is it 
possible to keep the family system, and yet cast out the ancestor-worship 
on which it rests ? There is no doubt that Christian missions are 
influencing the people. So far the missionaries have ^practically left the 
principles they teach to influence the lives of their converts and gradu- 
ally to transform the social fabric. This is the slowest way, but it is the 
wisest, because it involves least loss of what is good in the old state of 
affairs. But as surely as Christianity broke down the slave system of 
Rome, and the serf system of mediaeval Europe, so surely is it having a 
revolutionary effect on the system of domestic slavery in West Africa. 
Its progress cannot be stayed, and however much we may regret the 
passing of many of the old customs, they cannot for long endure before 
customs which, because resting on a higher idea of God, are nobler and 
truer. Meanwhile let us learn all we can regarding the older customs 
of the people before they pass for ever. It is because of the insight and 
the sympathy that Mr. Dennett and Major Leonard have brought to 
their work that their books are so interesting and so valuable. 

J. K. Macgregor. 



Old Italian Charts. — The magazine of the Societa Geografica 
Itaiiana for November has an article on certain nautical charts in the 
Communal Library in Bologna. They do not belong entirely to the 
" glorious epoch " of Italian mapmaking, from the end of the thirteenth 
to the middle of the sixteenth centuries, but they are still notable pro- 
ductions. They are: (1) The Atlas of Count Ottimano Freducci, dated 
1538; (2) Atlas of Giacomo Scotto, 1593; (3) Nautical Chart of Yin- 
cenzo Demetrio Volcio, 1601 ; (4) Nautical Chart of Placido Caloiro, 


1639 ; (5) Atlas of Placido Caloiro, 1665; (G) Atlas of Trofi mo Vernier, 
1679 ; and (7) an anonymous atlas. 

These have all been described before, but the present article gives 
more detail. There are many points of interest in these later charts, 
showing, for instance, the steps of transition from the mediaeval to the 
modern map. The Commune of Bologna also possess a splendid atlas 
of Candia, drawn by hand by Francisco Basilicata, from 1636 to 1639, 
dedicated to Andrea Vernier. 

Tlie executive of the Geographical Exhibition to be held in Venice 
next May promise to show a display of cartographical treasures, and it 
is just possible that visitors may have an opportunity of seeing these old 


The Lake of Pangong, — In the Journal of Geology (vii. 1906) Mr. 
Ellsworth Huntington gives an account of this lake, which he visited on 
his way to Chinese Turkestan. The lake, which lies in the province of 
Ladakh, or Little Tibet, is the last of a series of five connected lakes 
lying at a height of 14,000 feet. The upper lakes are in Tibetan 
territory, and drain into one another so that they are fresh, but Pangong, 
which has no outlet, is saline. At the time of Mr. Huntington's visit, 
at the beginning of May, the lake was still frozen, and the minimum 
air temperature at night was from 21° to 29^ Fahr. The inhabitants 
were then just beginning to sow barley, the only crop which will ripen. 
This May-sown crop is reaped in September, and at the lake level 
usually ripens, but at Phobrang, a few hundred feet higher, it often 
fails, the limit of cultivation being thus reached. 

The origin of the lake is of some interest in connection with the 
question of the glacial origin of lakes generally. It has been stated that 
the basin is due to the damming of an old outlet by fans formed by 
tributary torrents, but the author is of opinion that this is an error, and 
that there must be a rock lip which blocks the outlet. He considers 
further that the probabilities are that the basin behind the lip has been 
eroded by ice, and that it thus resembles the fiords of Xortvay and the 
valley lakes of Switzerland. 

Another interesting point about the lake is that its lacustrine 
deposits and shorelines indicate that it is subject to constant oscillations 
of level due to variations either in rainfall or evaporation. The i:)ossi- 
bility that such variations are taking place simultaneously over a large 
area in Asia suggests that the detailed study of these variations may 
cast much light upon the recent history of climate. 

A New Volcanic Island. — The Times recently reported the 
appearance of a new volcanic island off the Burmese coast, and some 
further details are furnished in a letter to Nature for February 18. The 
island is situated off the coast of Arakan, in the Bay of Bengal, about 
nine miles to the north-westward of Chebuda Island, and appeared 
above the surface of the sea on December 14. Its greatest length is 
307 yards, and greatest breadth 217 yards, while the summit has a 


height of 19 feet above high-water level. When visited by Commander 
Beauchamp at the end of December, the island was found to be still in 
an active condition at the northern end, where several springs of hot 
liquid mud were found. Elsewhere the surface had dried in the sun, 
and would support the weight of a man. Mingled with the mud of 
which the island is composed a few fragments of angular stone were 
found, and an interesting point was the amount of drift-wood which had 
accumulated in the short period which had elapsed between the origin 
of the island and its being visited. The naturalist of the party collected 
no less than fourteen kinds of seed. In view, however, of the nature of 
the constituent material it is improbable that the island will endure for 
more than a short period. 


A New Zealand Geyser. — In the course of a short article in the 

Geological Magazim (Nov. 1906), Mr. M. Maclaren gives an interesting 
accouut of a short-lived New Zealand geyser. This geyser — Waimangu 
by name — was discovered in January 1900, though it had probably been 
in existence for a short time previously. Its basin was some 130 feet 
long and 80 feet wide, and was usually full of black muddy water. It 
was active almost daily, but the eruptions were irregular in violence, 
sometimes liurling a mass of water estimated at 800 tons to a maximum 
height of 1500 feet, while at other times the geyser played lightly and 
intermittently for five or six hours at a time. For more than four years 
after its discovery the geyser was in active eruption, but during July 
and August 190i, it remained quiescent for nearly two months. This 
period was followed by renewed activity, which lasted till the end of 
October, when the geyser became extinct, and has so remained since. 
The interest of the case lies in the apparent connection with another 
phenomenon of the same region. Four miles to the north-west lies 
Tarawara Lake, which in June 1886 was effected by an eruption of 
Tarawara Mountain. The eruption threw a great barrier of ash across 
the valley which formed the natural outlet of the lake. The result was 
an immediate rise of the lake surface by 28 feet, and a slower sub- 
sequent rise which raised it an additional 14 feet by the end of October 
1904. On the very clay on which the geyser gave forth its last discharge 
the waters of the lake overtopped the barrier and rushed away, forming 
a tremendous torrent for a period of a few days until the level had sunk. 
This correlation in time certainly suggests that the waters of the geyser 
had a superficial origin, and the author mentions other New Zealand 
examples which tend in the same direction, and are thus opposed to 
the view of Suess that the waters of geysers have always a deep 

The Geological Survey of New Zealand. — We have received a 

monograph on the Geology of the Hokitika Sheet, North Westland Quad- 
rangle, which forms Bulletin No. 1 (new series) of the New Zealand 
Geological Survey. The district of Westland includes the western 
watershed of the Alps of South Island, a region full of scientific and 


geographical interest. The region is also of economic importance on 
account of the occurrence there of alluvial gold, and though gold is now 
only obtained in reduced amounts, the possibility of the discovery of 
gold-bearing veins of commercial value cannot be overlooked. Hokitika, 
the town which gives its name to the sheet under discussion, is a small 
settlement which oAved its origin to the fact that it was in the vicinity 
of the Hokitika river that the first finds of gold were made. 

As regards the general physical features of the district, the whole of 
the west coast is remarkable for its relatively low tree-line, despite the 
mild climate and the comparatively low latitude. On the lowlands 
trees are abundant, and the forests yield valuable timbei-, but at a 
height of about 3000 feet they become dwarfed to a low impenetrable 
scrub. This only persists about another 500 feet, and is replaced by 
an Alpine flora, which is again limited in extent by the very low snow- 
line. The rainfall is very heavy — an average of 1 17 inches per annum as 
against 51 inches at Wellington. Eain falls on an average 177 days 
per annum, and the wettest month is October. The mean annual 
temperature is 53° F. In 1906, a year of unusual cold. Pope's Pass 
(5290 feet) was almost covered with snow at the period of maximum 
melting, while snow fell at a height of 3000 feet during each of the 
summer months. 

The glaciers of the region are small and of the Piedmont type. They 
have little, if any, excavating power, and very little morainic matter is 
now being deposited. The glaciation of the region seems to date from 
the Miocene, and apparently reached its maximum in Upper Pliocene 
or early Pleistocene times, since which time it has gradually diminished. 
From the point of vieAV of topography the district can be divided into three 
regions — the alpine chain, with in the district a maximum height of 
7197 feet (Mount Eosamond) ; an elevated peneplain with a mean height 
of 4000 to 5000 feet; and a coastal plain. Some fine illustrations show 
the characters of these different regions. The coastal plain is interest- 
ing, because it is covered by a great sheet of morainic and fluviatile 
deposits in which are found the auriferous deposits. The whole of the 
glacial debris seems to be auriferous, but it is only worth woiking where 
a natural process of concentration has occurred, and the richer leads 
appear noAv to have been all exploited. 


The Structure and Topography of Graham Land.— Mr. Gunnar 
Anderssen gives in the I>uUetin of I he Gcoloyical Institution of the Uni- 
versity of Upsala (vii. 1904-5) an interesting account of Graham Land, 
based ujion the researches of the Swedish Antarctic Expedition. He 
points out that the land-forms of the region, here as usual, are intimately 
connected with the geological structure of the ground, thus making it 
possible to make rather wider statements as to geology than actual 
observations justify. By far the larger part of the area in question is 
made up of a series of plutonic rocks similar to those found in the 
Andean Cordillera, mingled with displaced and folded sedimentary 


rocks. The landscape so formed is highly mountainous, with narrow 
peaks and rugged crests. The ice-cover is generally incomplete, leaving 
bare many lofty mountains, only the more gentle slopes being covered 
with inland ice. The large valleys are filled with great glaciers, and 
even where the whole surface is ice-covered the swarms of crevasses and 
the hummocks reveal the unevenness of the ground beneath. On the 
other hand, on the east coast of the mainland, there are broad promon- 
tories and large islands, as Ross Island and Vega Island, of very 
characteristic shape. This is a typical plateau-region with its horizontal 
surface covered by slightly vaulted inland ice, the coastline being formed 
by dark vertical cliffs. These cliffs show clearly the composition of the 
area, being formed of a coarse basaltic tuff sparingly intercalated with 
lava flows and dikes. The centre of the region is in Ross Island, which 
rises in the centre to the huge conical Mt. Haddington, possibly a large 
volcano. The third type of landscape is found in the Snow Hill and 
Seymour Island region, and is interesting because it is the only consider- 
able region which is free from land-ice. The reason, perhaps partly to 
be sought in special conditions of temperature, etc., is apparently chiefly 
the nature of the rocks, which are soft sandstones of Cretaceous and 
Tertiary age. These sandstones are easily acted upon by water, and 
the regions where they occur are therefore low and deeply dissected. 
Only in this region does melting of the snow occur to any considerable 
extent in summer-time. The illustrations by which Mr. Anderssen's 
article is accompanied show admirably the different types of scenery 
in the three regions mentioned. 

As regards glaciation and the ice-covering, it is curious to note that, 
extensive as is the latter, the existing glaciers are far from active, and 
in the northern part of Graham Land at least the only icebergs pro- 
duced are small and irregular in form. The characteristically Antarctic 
tabular bergs met with by the expedition must therefore have come 
from further south. At the same time there are clear indications that 
glaciation was formerly much more powerful than at present. At the 
southernmost point reached by Nordenskjold evidence was found that 
the inland ice formerly rose 300 metres higher on the side of the 
Borchgrevink nunatak than it does to-day. 

Another point upon which the paper lays great stress is the remark- 
able similarity both as regards orography and geological structure to be 
observed between Graham Land and South America. 

Meteorology in the Antarctic. — In connection with our previous 
note on this subject (p. 96), we may state that Mr. W. S. Bruce has 
received word of the arrival of the Uruguay at Scotia Bay, South 
Orkneys, with Mr. Angus Rankin's party on board. The vessel 
encountered hundreds of icebergs, and heavy pack ice, and was 
considerably damaged. The party at the Observatory were found to 
be in good health, and to have accomplished a year of excellent work. 

New Arctic Expedition. — According to the Afhenceum the Duke of 
Orleans is preparing to lead another expedition to the Arctic in the 


yacht La Belgica. Captain de Gerlache will be in command, and the 
crew will consist of men who have already had Arctic experience. It is 
expected that the expedition will sail from Ostend in the middle of 

Commercial Geography. 

The Production of Cereals in France. — A short note on this 
subject ill the lu'cue Geaerak des Sdcnces for December 15 gives some 
interesting facts. The area devoted to cereals in France oscillates about 
37 milliou acres (15 million hectares), that is, covers about 28 or 29 per 
cent, of the whole area of the country. About half the total is given up 
to wheat, but this will no longer pay as a sole crop, though it does well in 
rotation, especially with beet. The areas given to wheat and barley are 
slightly decreasing, while that covered by oats is stationary. In 1905 
the total production of wheat in France was 327 million bushels (119 
million hectolitres), and though far behind Russia and the United States 
she ranks third in the list of producing countries. But in spite of this 
enormous production she does not produce quite enough for her own 
wants, her exports of wheat, oats and barley, never quite equalling her 
imports. Much of the excess is furnished by Algeria and Tunis, and 
Russia also sends corn to France. The price of home-grown cereals is 
no longer determined by local conditions, but by the prices which reign 
in the great markets of the world. This is due to the constant diminu- 
tion of the price of transport across the ocean, so that now it costs less 
to bring wheat from New York to Havre than to bring it from Havre 
to Paris. 

The Commercial and Colonial Expansion of Modern States. — 

The Recls'a Colonlale, official organ of the Institute Culoniale Italiano, 
whose (Ubut we lately noticed and welcomed, is justifying its existence 
by the character of its contributions. One excellent feature is, that 
debates in the Senate on Colonial questions are quoted in cxfenso, so that 
those interested may refer to thena with facility, without having to 
turn over old files of newspapers. The second number reports a discus- 
sion in the Senate, inaugurated by De Martino, on the necessity, among 
other things, for the reform of the Consular Service, which some of us 
might do Avorse than read. 

In the third number there appears a most interesting article by Dr. 
Filippo Carli, secretary to the Chamber of Commerce in Brescia, entitled 
" Technical Education and Economic Expansion." The occasion for it 
is a book just issued by Marco Fanni on " The Commercial and Colonial 
Expansion of Modern State?," and Dr. Carli uses it as a text from which 
to evolve his own views on technical education. The book itself should 
interest us, because the author's prognostications concerning the future 
of Great Britain are most gloomy, and while we may not share in his 
alarm, it is useful to know what impression we produce on our neighbours. 
Carli differs from him on one important point, and uses this very diverg- 
ence to illustrate his own opinions. Fanno, it seems, believes that the 


phenomena of expansion are purely material. As he puts it, " the 
colonial expansion of the different countries depends on their commercial 
expansion, and that iu its turn on the increase of population." Again, 
" the impelling force of economic, social and political progress, is the 
increase of population." Nothing is allowed for racial differences, 
nothing for superior training; the only difference is in geographical 
position. For instance, the northern nations were less agricultural than 
the southern from their geographical position, and so had to develop 
their industries in order to purchase food-stuffs. 

Carli traverses this view entirely, dwelling on the great force of what he 
calls the spiritual element, which includes technical education. Technical 
education influences economic expansion in two ways: (1) as the co- 
efficient of industrial development, and therefore indirectly as a power 
in the conquests of markets ; (2) as the direct coefficient iu commercial 

From these two points of view Germany is held up as a great example. 
Directly after the Franco-Prussian War, she set herself to educate her 
people. The diffusion of technical education began iu Prussia in 1876 ; 
in Wiirfcemburg the most important industrial schools began in 1893-94 ; 
the great school for textiles in Planen was founded in 1877 ; the similar 
one in Barlin started in 1875; and many others had their beginning 
about the same time. We know what the result has been ; how Germany 
has advanced by leaps and bounds in the commercial world. 

So much for industrial development. When we consider commercial 
penetration, Germany very wisely says, " It is not enough to have goods 
of the best quality, produced to undersell our rivals. We must make 
the consumer aware of their value." Hence comes the development of 
the consular service. The modern German consul is a trained man of 
business. The whole of the German trade centres iu his office to be 
fostered and encouraged by him, and he is never above his business. 

Rubber Cultivation in Ceylon. — The last issue (1906-7) of 
Ferguson's Cnjlon H-uidbooJ: and Dlrectorij, a volume of great value 
which has just reached us, contains some statistics as to the area under 
rubber in Ceylon which have, or are likely to have iu the immediate 
future, considerable economic importance. In July 1905 Ceylon had 
about 40,000 acres planted with rubber, but so rapid was progress 
in the following year that in little more than a year the acreage 
leaped up to 100,000 acres, not counting the acreage of native gardens, 
which is considerable. In the Malay Peninsula there are probably 
about another 60,000 acres. As yet these plantations, almost all 
of recent origin, produce only a few hundred tons, and thus do not 
seriously compete in the market with the supplies from S>uth America 
and Africa, but there is aprobibility that in another six or seven years 
Ceylon and the Malay region with Java will be each in a position to put 
about 10,000 tons on the market. It will be remembered that in South 
America and the Congo Free State it is the wild rubber which is col- 
lected, and there is som? doubt whether tropical Africa at least can 
long keep up the present rate of supply. As both Ceylon and the 


Malay region are in different ways Avell fitted to cultivate rubber, Ceylon 
especially having a good and cheap supply of labour, there can be no 
doubt that Africa at least will have to alter her methods if she is not to 
lose her market. It is one of the curious little facts with which economic 
geography abounds that at the present time Ceylon is supplying seed to 
Brazil, from which her own plants of Para rubber were originally 

A very interesting account of the development of rubber cultivation 
in Ceylon will also be found in Naiure for December 27, in an article 
by Dr. J. C. Willis, which also gives some account of the Rubber 
Exhibition held at Ceylon last September. The Eeport on this Exhi- 
bition, containing the lectures and discussions which took place at it, 
has also been sent to us by Messrs. Ferguson of Colombo. Further, the 
indirect effect of the cultivation of rubber in Ceylon in stimulating 
interest in its cultivation in South Ameiica will be found discussed in 
a paper by M. Paul Le Conte in the Bulletin mensnel of the Society de 
G6ographie Commerciale de Paris fur November last. 


The British Association. — We have received the usual intimation 
in regard to the Meeting of the British Association, which is to be held 
this year at Leicester, beginning on Wednesday, July 31, under the 
Presidency of Sir David Gill. The President of Section E (Geography) 
is to be Mr. G. G. Chisholm. An attractive programme of excursions is 
being arranged, the geologically famous Charnwood Forest area being 
within easy reach of Leicester by rail or road. The Honorary Local 
Secretaries are Messrs. Alfred Colson and G. V. Hiley, Millstone Lane, 


In the December issue of the Revista Geografica Italiana there 
appears a suggestive article on Professor Cvigic's monumental work on 
" Human Settlements in the Servian Countries," especially interesting in 
connection with the distribution of cities and villages in the region. 
These two types of settlement have, of course, a widely difterent origin, 
for while the situation and character of a village is determined solely 
by the local topographical conditions, the choice of the site of a city is 
influenced by many concurrent factors, such as the great arteries of 
communication, the rivers, the seaports, and their connection with 
foreign countries. 

If we consult the map of the Balkan Peninsula, it will be noticeable 
that the western division differs in character from the eastern. In the 
former, the country is divided up by mountain ranges running north 
and south, with deep and sunless valleys between them ; while towards 
the east, the mountains are irregular in outline, enclosing circumscribed 
depressions and valleys which only with difficulty communicate with one 
another. Again, it will be seen that the Peninsula is intersected 


longitudinally by the great Morava and Vardar valleys, and transversely 
by the ancient Via Egnatia. In a climatic sense the country is also 
divided up, for while the northern slopes are densely wooded, and are sub- 
ject to all the weather conditions of a forest land, the southern division 
is arid and devoid of vegetation. These geographical peculiarities 
are reflected in the settlements. Of villages there are two types, 
roughly speaking, the sparse and the imited, and it will be found that 
the line of division runs from north-east to south-west, that the sjDarse 
type prevails in the north-west, and the united in the south-east. As 
might be expected, the long ranges of mountains with their sunless 
valleys, full of water, encourage the inhabitants to settle high up on 
the ridges, in the sun, and the condition that is found is that of long 
straggling villages, each house apart from the others and surrounded by 
its fields. The wooded condition further favours this tendency to 
isolated farms. In the south-east, on the other hand, where the isolated 
valley and the absence of forest lands prevail, the villages are at the 
bottom of these valleys, the houses being huddled together, often back 
to back, and the pasture lands are situated at a distance on the 

The cities, again, are naturally found along the main arteries of 
communication already alluded to, along the great highway of the 
Morava and Vardar, from Salonika to the Danube ; by the Via Egnatia 
from the Black Sea to the shores of the Adriatic ; and in the north 
along the line of the Save and Danube, one of the most striking 
examples being Belgrade itself, situated as it is at the junction of the 
Danube and Save. One sees how these cities wax and wane in prosperity 
in sympathy with the fortunes of the seaports and the foreign traffic. 
For instance, up to the early part of last century the bulk of the traffic 
went and came by the Adriatic ports, whereas since then it tends to 
take the northern routes towards the Danube, and the })rosperity of the 
former cities and ports has suffered in proportion. 

While there is, of course, nothing new in the above conception, the 
particular application is interesting. 

We publish this month a short note on the cultivation of rubber in 
Ceylon which may be recommended to teachers as affording material 
for an interesting lesson. Though as yet the cultivated rubber does not 
command so high a price on the market as the Avild product, yet the 
probabilities seem to be that there will happen in this case what has 
already happened in the case of cinchona. We gave here some time 
ago (xx. p, 321) a short account of the work done by the Dutch in the 
acclimatisation of that plant, and the consequent loss to South America 
of much of its market for the product; and it would seem that the 
painstaking work Avhich has been done in the case of rubber is likely to 
have similarly its reward in the capture by the eastern planters of the 
rubber market. If this occurs, or if the East can even seriously 
threaten the South American and African monopoly, the probabilities 
are that extensive social changes in, for example, the Congo Free State 
will necessarily take place, and there is something very stimulating to 


the imagination in the slow conquest by scientific methods of an industry 
hitherto conducted on primitive and slovenly lines. 

According to an article in Science for December 21, the Geographic 
Society of Chicago has been interesting itself in the development of in- 
struction in meteorology throughout the United States. It has collected 
a set of 270 lantern slides of various meteorological subjects, and has 
compiled a descriptive text to accompany them. The slides have been 
copied from the Atlas of Meteorology, recent text-books, the Monthly IFcather 
Eevietv, and from photographs, etc., while the text has been compiled under 
the auspices of an efficient committee. The text includes a bibliography 
for the use of teachers, and the whole is available at cost price. The 
idea is an admirable one, and deserves to be further developed. 


Modern Spain, 181.5-1898. By Butler Clarke. Cambridge : At the 
University Press, 1906. Price 7s. 6d. 

This is another volume of the Cambridge Historical Series, which quite sus- 
tains the high level which the previous works have accustomed us to. The aim 
of this series is, as the editor says, to sketch the history of modern Europe with 
that of its chief colonies and conquests, and it is intended for the use of all persons 
anxious to understand the nature of existing political conditions. As indicated in 
the title. Modern Spain, after an introductory chapter touching on the time of the 
Peninsular War, or as the Spaniard calls it, the War of Independence, takes the 
reader over that stormy period from 1815 to close on the present time. 

The interest for the general reader will centre on the account of the Pragmatic 
Sanction and the resulting Carlist wars. Spain had always from time immemorial 
recognised the right of females to the throne of Castile and Leon in default of 
males, but Philip v. introduced the Salic Law in 1713. Later, in 1789, Carlos iv. 
set this law aside, and a decree was prepared which received the name of the 
Pragmatic Sanction, and which had the effect of restoring the former conditional 
rights of females. But it was never promulgated, and therefore, as Don Carlos 
insisted, never became law. Forty years later, when it was known that Doiia 
Christina was to become a Jiiother, Ferdinand proceeded to the due promulgation, 
but it was too late. Hence the Carlist Avars, and all the horrors of civil warfare. 
The first Don Carlos seems to have been a scrupulous and honourable gentleman, 
and to have behaved throughout with great gallantry. But for this, his 
descendants might have ruled over Spain. 

Many familiar figures flit across the pages as we read. Espartero, the brilliant 
soldier but unscrupulous politician ; Serrano, the gay and gallant lover of Isabella ; 
Cabrera, the brutal Carlist leader ; and certainly not least, Queen Isabella herself; 
how she was made a pawn of and wronged by her scheming Neapolitan mother. 

An important addition to the volume is the copious bibliography. No work is 
included which is not considered trustworthy, and on this account we are glad to 
observe that the Episidios NacionaJes of Perez Galdos have an honourable 
mention, for they are delightful reading and full of quiet humour. 

It is with great regret that one reads, in the sympathetic memoir, that the 


author died just as he had completed this work. He was an enthusiastic lover of 
Spain, and by his extensive acquaintance with Spanish literature and history, 
was unusually well qualified for the task which he undertook. 

Britain and the British Seas. By H. J. Mackinder, M.A. With Maps and 
Diagrams. Second Edition. Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1907. Price 7s. 6d. 
This book has so rapidly acquired the status of a classic that all geographers 
will welcome the appearance of a second edition. The alterations are trifling ; we 
notice that same, but not all the misprints, etc., noted in our previous review 
(xviii., p. 325) have been corrected, and it is naturally gratifying to us to see how 
often the Scottish Geographical Magctzine appears among the new references 

As a point of special interest to our own readers, we may notice that on p. 127 
it is stated that the Avon has probably captured the head-stream of the Dee, Dee 
being obviously a misprint for Don. 

niustratecl Handbook to the Perthshire Natural History Museum, and Brief 
Guide to the Animals and Plants of the County. By Alex. M. Rodger, 
Curator. Second Edition. Perth, 1906. Price 3d. 

This pamphlet was reviewed in vol. xxi. p. 507. The new edition is slightly 
modified in form, and has some additional illustrations, and also a sketch map of 
Perthshire. Otherwise we have only to repeat our former words of praise. 

Sketches from Normandy. By Louis Becke. London : T. Werner Laurie, 
1907. Pp. 250. Price 6s. 

The title, be it noted, is not of but from Normandy, and really the locale is 
unimportant. The sketches are mainly of people, — tourists, French domestics, 
French children. Also they are concerned with dogs, shooting, the entente 
cordiale, etc. They are light and abound in amusing incidents. 

The Heart of Spain: An Artist's Impression of Toledo. By Stewart Dick. 
London and Edinburgh : T. N. Foulis, 1907. 

The result of Mr. Dick's sojourn in Toledo is a very pleasant volume, breath- 
ing the fascination of the place. As he truly suggests, it is a city peopled with 
the ghosts of old-time warriors, Goths, Moors, and Christians, jostling one 
another in the narrow streets. Zorrilla, indeed, in one of his dramas represents 
this feeling, and as one looks over the ramparts by the light of the evening sun, 
the impression is produced that with a very slight stretch of imagination one 
might see the armour of the host^ of the Catholic Kings glinting in the distance. 

Mr. Dick's illustrations are admirable, especially the sketches in colour, 
which most faithfully reproduce the colouring of Toledo and the country round. 
Those who have visited Toledo will feel that in turning over the pages of this 
volume they are making a return journey in the company of "one who knows." 

We cannot make up our minds to share his high opinion of El C4reco, having 
a recollection of sundry nightmares by him on the walls of the Prado. 

My Experiences of the Island of Cyprus. By B. Stewart. Illustrated from 
Photographs by the Author. London : Skeffington and Son, 1906. Price 

Cyprus is seldom written about, and Mr. Stewart's account of the British isle 
in the north-west corner of the Mediterranean Sea is all the more interesting-. He 


makes no pretence to literary style, but tells a plain, unvarnished tale, with 
sufficient sprightliness to produce a readable book. He has been twice in the 
island in recent years, first as an engineer in connection with the railway, and the 
second time (in the early months of 1906) revisiting old scenes. Cyprus is a 
wretched island, sufiFering from extremes, deluged at one time with rains, and at 
another time burnt to a cinder by the heat. Mosquitoes abound, and ophthalmia 
is common. " What a desolate and unhappy-looking country Cyprus is I " is the 
exclamation agaiu and again of the traveller gazing on the broad stretch of 
country. To add to its drawbacks, it seems to be badly served for post-office 
and trade purposes by the steamship companies. In the dashing years of the 
forward Colonial policy of 1895 and onwards, British money was flung at it, and 
squandered on harbours nobody uses, and on railways on which nobody travels. 
British capital has also been sunk in trying to utilise the land, but it has been a 
hopeless enterprise. While the island is administered by Great Britain, it is still, 
according to the one-sided treaty of 1878, a part of the Turkish Empire, and on 
certain conditions being fulfilled, Britain may evacuate it at any time. This 
doubtless impedes the development of the island ; indeed it is gravely alleged 
" British administration has done nothing for Cyprus," in spite of a yearly grant 
of over .£.30,000 fi'om the Imperial' exchequer. The only useful outlay has been 
in the making of country roads. It is also remarkable that it is the Greek flag 
that is almost universally used, and the Union Jack is seldom visible. Mr. 
Stewart has a good deal to say about the churches in Cyiirus, and enriches his 
book with many excellent photographs of them. He also gives a brief and 
succinct account of its history and of its few antiquities. If Cyprus-is to redeem 
its past, it is time the Turkish bond was broken, and 'Britain's flag allowed to fly 
with undisputed authority over the whole island. 


Persia Past and Present : A Book of Travel and Research. With more than 200 
Illustrations and a Map. By A. V. Williams Jacksox, Professor of Indo- 
Iranian Languages in Columbia University. New York : The Macmillan 
Company. London : Macmillan and Co., Ltd. 1906. Price 17s. net. 

We have here an important contribution to the historical geography of western 
Persia. It is not an ordinary traveller's tale, but the work of a competent 
scientific investigator and interpreter, prepared, as every page proves, with great 
care and elaboration, and written in a clear and graphic style. The author is 
professor of Indo-Iranian languages in Columbia University, and was for a time 
adjunct-professor of English language and literature. Priind facie, the tenure 
of these offices is warranty of his being a man of culture and learning. This book 
wholly confirms the impression. As an ardent student of the ancient languages 
and religions of the East, Professor Jackson had previously visited India and 
Ceylon, and by personal investigation had learned among the Parsis of Bombay, 
descendants of the old Zoroastrians and preservers of their traditional beliefs and 
customs, much about the ancient Magian religion, its sacred writings, and the 
past history and present condition of its votaries. He had in 1899 written a 
life of Zoroaster, the prophet of ancient Iran, sage and reformer, "representative 
and type of the laws of the Medes and Persians," " the forerunner of those wise 
men of the East who came and bowed before the majesty of the new-born Light 
of the world." In that book he endeavoured to picture for the reader the some- 
what shadowy figure of the prophet, and to sift from the heap of legend, tradi- 
tion, and classical allusion the facts of his life, times, and teaching. In the 


present book the author again appears as an enthusiastic and laborious inquirer 
into things old and new : a well-equipped linguist, acquainted with the various 
scripts to be found in western Persia from the Accadian or Assyrian cuneiform 
to the modern cursive Persian, and familiar with the records of historians and 
geographers from the Achaamenian rock-inscriptions and the pahlavi texts of the 
Sasanids to the writings of mediaeval and modern Arabs and Europeans. 

The plan of the journey described in this book was, says Professor Jackson, 
to traverse as much of the territory known to Zoroaster as possible, and to visit 
the places most celebrated in the history of Persia. Entering the country from 
Russian Transcaucasia by way of Tiiiis, Erivan, and Julfa, he visited Tabriz, and 
traversed the Zoroastriati region round Lake Urumiah. Thence he proceeded 
southward to Takht-i-Suleiman (the ruined site of Gandaka and the great fire- 
temple of Adhargushnasp), and Hamadan (the ancient Median capital, Ecbatana). 
From there he visited the Ganj Namah trilingual inscriptions carved in cuneiform 
on Mount Alvaiid by Darius and Xerxes. From Hamadan also a digression 
westward to Kermanshah was made, in the outward and return courses of which 
he scaled, at peril of limb and life, th'e great Behistan rock and examined its 
famous inscriptions ; inspected the grottoes and bas-relief sculptures of Tak-i- 
Bostan, with which is associated the legends of Khosru, Shirin, and Farhad ; and 
identified at Kangavar the ruined temple of Anahita, the Persian Diana, whose 
worship was widespread in Iran in the fourth century before Christ. Continuing 
the southward journey from Hamadan, the author arrived at Ispahan, the former 
cai^ital of the modern Shahs of Persia, where he found resident a few families of 
Zoroastrians or Parsis, the first he had met in Persia. He then went on, first 
to Pasargadte, on the plain of Murghab, the royal seat of Cyrus, where the great 
monarch's column and tomb still bear his epitaph ; and then, forty miles further 
south, to Persepolis, the imperial city of Darius and his successors, the magnifi- 
cent ruins of which attest its once regal splendour. Finally, the author reached 
the southern limit of his journey, Shiraz, the home of Saadi and Hafiz. Thence 
returning northwards he visited Yezd. The largest community of Zoroastrians in 
Persia, numbering several thousand souls, is established there ; and in inter- 
course with them the author found the chief occupation and interest of his stay 
in Yezd. Thereafter he proceeded to Teheran, whence he visited Rei, the Rhaga 
or Rages of antiquity, the traditional home of the mother of Zoroaster ; and 
subsequently left Persia by way of Kasbin and Resht. 

The purpose of the journey, again says the author, was in the first instance 
antiquarian study and scholarly research, especially with regard to Zoroaster and 
the ancient faith of the Magi. But he likewise observed and for himself investi- 
gated, and in this book has described, many of the geographical features and 
historical problems, as well as the ancient and modern manners and customs, of 
western Iran. Further as he went along, he noted, and has depicted, the condi- 
tions of domestic and national life and economy, and the incidents and accidents 
of travel, in the Persia of to-day. He has thereby succeeded in producing a 
most interesting and well-illustrated book of modern travel for the general reader ; 
and for the special student a work enriched and illuminated by the results of 
solid learning and of careful research into the past and present records and 
history of the field of travel. 

Tibet, the Mysterious. By Sir Thomas Holdich. With Maps, Diagrams, and 
other Illustrations, and Map by W. and A. K. Johnston. London : Alston 
Rivers, Ltd. Price 7s. 6d. net. 
This volume of " The Story of Exploration " Series is a useful and timely 


addition to the series. The account given in it of the explorations which have 
gradually, more especially during the last thirty or forty years, substituted 
accurate knowledge for fable and ignorance, may be taken as putting into readily 
iatelligible aid realable form the ge)graphical results of those explorations and 
their possible political and commercial effects. It also shows the great extent 
of work of first-class importance from a political and commercial point of view, 
principally in eastern and south-eastern Tibet, that still awaits the explorer. A 
beginning not wanting in promise has, through the late military expedition from 
India, been made in the penetration into Tibet of European influence friendly to 
Great Britain. The hope seems not unreasonable that, by virtue of tact and 
patience and the avoidance of haste on the part of the invader, the next quarter 
of a century may see the establishment of freer intercourse and of better means 
of communication with Tibet, and the opening up of the territories, as yet 
scarcely trodden by the explorer but apparently rich in resources and population, 
that lie on its south-eastern borders. Nor ought it to be overlooked that while we 
have been disposed to rail at the exclusiveness and obstruction of the ruling 
powers in Tibet, the same attribute and attitude are to be found, and have been 
quietly acquiesced in on the Indian side of the great Himalayan divide, within 
our own immediate sphere of political and commercial influence. What of 
Nepal ? It is a country practically unvisited by — almost completely closed 
against— the European explorer and trader. Not even the courses of some of 
its great rivers — the Kurmili, the Gandak, the Kosi, and their affiuents — which 
debouch into the Gangetic valley, have been tracked through it by our geographers 
to their sources on the Indian or the further side of the Himalayan watershed. 
In ancient times intercourse between India and Tibet across the central and 
eastern Himalayas was undoubtedly freely carried on. According to tradition 
the first king of Tibet was a native of India, son of the king of the eastern 
Gangetic kingdom of Kosila ; and Buddhism probably permeated Tibet princi- 
pally through the s.ime avenues from India. It may safely be said that but for 
the interposition of the exclusive principalities of Nepal, Sikkim, and Bhutan, 
British communication with and influence in Tibet would long ago have been 
far greater than it is now. It seems high time, therefore, that the geographer and 
trader, backed by the Indian Government, should take these regions peacefully 
but steadily in hand. 

As a literary production this book in its earlier chapters is not quite worthy of 
the reputation of the distinguished author of TJte Indian Borderland. The material 
available for the compilation of these chapters was no doubt slender and scanty, 
and vague in details. But from Chapter viii, (in which the travels of Hue and 
Gabet are recounted) onwards, and above all in the chapters wherein the journeys 
of the intrepid explorers (European and native) from India are described, the 
narrative, though sometimes dift'use, lacks little in definiteness of outline or 
detail. The author is dealing with well-considered material with some of which 
he has firsthand and intimate acquaintance. Much of the material is not readily 
accessible to the ordinary reading public. To them therefore it is a very distinct 
boon to be presented with a consectitive account of the exploratory work which 
has been accomplished during the last few decades in the Tibetan region. In this 
account not the least gratifying feature is the hearty acknowledgment and appre- 
ciation of the i)art taken by the native Indian surveyors and explorers Avho, with 
rare fidelity to their employers, persistently carried out, through long periods of 
peril and privation, the duty intrusted to them. 

A bibliography is appended to the book, which will prove useful to those who 
wish to refer to original authorities. 


Before closing this notice, it may not be out of place to say that the ideutifica- 
cation by Hue of an Englishman who was reported to have lived at Lhasa from 
1826 to 1838 with the traveller Moorcroft is not altogether probable, although the 
author of this book seems disposed so to accept it (y. chap. vii. 123-4). Moor- 
croft was a veterinary surgeon, who, after attaining eminence in his profession 
in England, in 1808 and being then over forty years of age, went to India to 
supervise the East India Company's horse-breeding and remount operations in 
northern India. After making his expedition into Nari Khorsum in company 
with Haidar Hearsey in 1811-12, he started in 1819, accompanied by an English- 
man named Trebeck, on a journey to Turkistan through the Panjab (then ruled by 
Ranjit Singh), Ladak, Kashmir, and Afghanistan. His object was investigation, 
not only regarding the Turkoman horse for breeding purposes in India, but also 
into the general trade resources of those countries and the possibility of estab- 
lishing mercantile relations between them and India. He was not, however, 
accredited by the Indian Government, which, on the contrary, discountenanced 
his proceedings and eventually stopped his pay during absence. He left Bokhara 
on the return journey in August 1825, but got no further than Andkhui in 
Afghan Turkistan, where he was said to have died, probably through foul means. 
Trebeck also was said to have died somewhat later at Mazar*i-Sharif. Some 
at lea^t of their papers were recovered, and an account of their travels was 
published in 1841 under the editorship of the distinguished orientalist, H. H. 
Wilson. That, unknown to the Indian authorities, the report of Moorcroft's death 
was false, and that he made his way from Bokhara to Lhasa and lived there till 1838, 
seems scarcely credible. 

Folk Tales from Tibet, to ith Illustrations by a Tibetan Artist and some Verses from 
Tibetan Love-Songs. Collected and translated by Captain W. F. O'Connor, 
CLE. London : Hurst and Blackett, Ltd., 1906. Price 6s. net. 

This book hardly falls within the scope of geography, except that in these 
days geography lays claim to an interest in most mundane i\icts and affairs. 
Geographical or not, however, the book contains a capital collection of fables, very 
well told, portraying, chiefly under the guise of talking animals, the foibles and 
virtues of mankind in Tibet and elsewhere, and full of worldly wisdom not unmixed 
with guile. The folklorist will judge whether the stories are probably indigenous 
or exotic, ancient or modern. But in any case they prove that the Tibetan of 
to-day, who loves to recite them and to hear them recited, has imagination and 
humour, and in spite of lamas (grand and lowly), demons, wizards, and other 
causes of depression, has plenty of good spirits and is a happy-minded and 
sagacious enough fellow. The drawings are after the conventional manner of the 
country — a manner apparently derived from China as regards design and colour. 
The best picture (a photograph) is the frontispiece showing a Tibetan fabulist and 
his household, the former a jolly-looking old soul who is plainly capable of enjoy- 
ing the narration of his tales as mucli as, the author tells us, the listeners are. 

La Chine novatrice et guerriere. Par le Capitaine D'Olloxe. Paris : Colin, 1906. 

Price 3 fr. 50 c. 

As Captain D'Ollone was commissioned by the French Government to visit 
and report on China, this work is not that of a passing traveller. He entitles it 
" Innovating and Warlike China," showing at once her willingness to accept 
changes and her determination to defend herself. After reminding us that Chinese 
history begins in B.C. 722, he describes graphically the constant wars which 


occurred for the occupation of China down to its most glorious period, that of the 
great Manchu emperors, Kangsi and Kien-lung (1662-1799), the first British 
envoy, Lord Macartney, being received by the latter in 1759. From 1808 onwards, 
difficulties occurred with Britain in regard to the exportation of opium from 
India to China, the British fleet in 1840 bombarding Canton, taking Shanghai, 
threatening Nankin, and thus causing China to yield. The result of the " Opium 
War" was the treaty of Nankin in 1842, which opened China by according five 
treaty ports to British commerce, and ceded Hong Kong to Britain, this being 
the first dismemberment of China. France and the United States were afterwards 
accorded the same privileges of commerce. In 1851 the Taiping rebellion shook 
China to its foundations, and led to the French and British fleets seizing Canton, 
the Taku forts, and the mouth of the Peiho in 1857. In 1860 a French and 
Anglo-Indian force retook the Taku forts and burned the summer palace near 
Pekin, after which the province, of which Vladivostok is capital, was ceded to 
Russia. At last, in 1864, after thirteen years of carnage during which 3,000,000 
are said to have perished, the Taiping rebellion was quelled by the Chinese 
Imperial army capturing Nankin, the rebels' capital. The more recent dis- 
memberments of China are the conquest of Indo-China by the French and British, 
and of Formosa and Corea by the Japanese, with the occupation of Kiao Chau 
by the Germans, and the cession of Port Arthur to the Russians, and of Weihaiwei 
to the British. The author points out that China consists of not one but many 
races, and resembles a Europe rather than a France or an Italy. 

Buddhism, now the faith of four hundred millions of Chinese, was introduced 
from India into China a.d. 65, but it was not authorised by Imperial edict till 
335. In 638 Mohammedanism was introduced from Persia, and in 744 an 
emperor had a religious service in his palace conducted by seven Christian priests. 
In 1293 the Franciscan, John de Monte Corvino, arrived in Pekin, sent by the 
Pope, and was well received. Fourteen years later he was nominated Archbishop 
of Pekin with three suffragan bishops. Foreign Christians, however, behaved so 
badly after their arrival in China, that they acquired the name of " foreign devils," 
and were massacred in the sixteenth century, but the Jesuits persevered, and, 
being learned men, converted many Chinese, even members of the Imperial family. 
The great Manchu Emperor Kangsi accorded liberty to the Christian faith 
throughout the empire in 1692. Dominican missionaries, however, protested 
against the Jesuit ritual and appealed with success to the Pope, which irritated 
Kmgsi, who in 1717 issued an edict prohibiting the promulgation of the Christian 
faith. Po2)e Benedict xiv. issued a bull condemning the Chinese worship of 
ancestors and Confucius, and a terrible persecution of Christians occurred in 
174G, which was renewed in 1838 owing to the opium war with Britain. In 1844 
a treaty with France authorised Christian missionaries, and there are now forty- 
three bishoprics and 900,000 Roman Catholics in China, while there are 200,000 
Protestants. There are thirty or forty millions of Mohammedans, and there is 
scarcely an important town without its mosque. Islam progresses daily in China. 

After discussing administrative and social China, the author describes its 
modern transformation, beginning with the reforms from 1860 to 1900. The 
defeat of China by Japan in 1894-5 produced consternation, for the Chinese had 
always regarded the little Japanese with contempt and as vassals. Military 
schools directed by European and Japanese instructors were at once established 
at Tientsin, Nankin, and Hankow. Later, telegraphs were introduced, and there 
are now 33,000 miles of telegraph. Then railways were constructed and extend 
already to over 3000 miles, with concessions for 2500 miles more. Nothing is 
mire remarkable than the way in which railways have become popular in China. 


With regard to the new Chinese army, the length of service has been fixed 
at ten years, three on active service, three in the first reserve, and four in the 
second reserve, which will furnish a reserve of one million men. After the 
army reforms are complete in 1908, the authorities hope to still further increase 
the army till it reaches ten million men all armed with the latest weapons and 
thoroughly trained after the best systems. Education is likewise being reformed 
in China, and in 1902 the University of Pekin was reorganised and divided into 
eight faculties preparing for forty-six different callings. The schools have also 
been reorganised, and foreign languages are taught in the following order — English, 
Japanese, French, German, and Russian. What stands in China's way is lack of 
money, or rather (for the country is very rich), the Government do not know how 
to finance the reforms they would like to introduce. The author concludes by 
declining to say whether or not China is approaching its downfall or renaissance, 
and decLires that he would be a bold man who would venture to prophesy 
regarding such a complex empire, of which, he maintains, " we know nothing.'' 

British Malaya : An Account of the Origin and Progress of British Influence in 
Malaya. By Sir F. Swettenham, K.C.INI.G. London : John Lane, 1906. 
Price 16s. net. 

This volume on British Malaya is not unworthy of the distinguished name of 
its author. From the first jsage to the last it holds our interest and our attention. 
It is jjartly an account of the Straits Settlements before and after they became a 
Crown Colony in 1867. It describes Penang and Wellesley with their entrancing 
beauty, Malacca with its romance and its records of by-gone European adventurers 
in Portuguese Cathedral and Dutch Stadthouse, Singapore — the Lion City — with 
its past, remote and almost unknown, and all the opening possibilities of its future. 
It is only eighty years since it entered on its present phase of British settlement 
and free port owing to the prescient wisdom of Sir Stamford Ratfies, and his 
co-adjutor Colonel Farquhar. In these eighty years Singapore has become the 
eighth port in the world for the volume of its trade. Raffles, however, aimed at 
more than the establishment of a port at Singapore ; his further aim was to have 
h;id a sister p )rt at Acheen in Sumatra, and thus have handed over to his country 
the guardianship of the gate of the Eastern Ocean, so that it might ever be open 
for the benefit of " such as pass upon the seas on their lawful occasions." One of 
the most charming features of this book is the tribute paid to this same Sir S. 
Raffles, that almost forgotten Founder of Empire, " who never exalted himself nor 
depreciated others." His very burial-place is unknown to us, but his living 
character is brought before us in the extracts from the Hikazat Abdullah, the fresh 
and simply-written book of his Malay protege, Abdullah. 

But the main part of the volume concerns the progress made by what are called 
the Federated Malay States, namely, Perak, Selangor, the Negri SembilanorNine 
States, and the eastern state of Pahang. These native states are under the pro- 
tection of the British Government, though not forming a constituent part of the 
British Empire. The record of their progress and of the benefits thus conferred 
on humanity must fill every Briton with pride and gratitmle. The story of it is 
told by Sir F. Swettenham — himself a Governor of the Straits Colony and High 
Commissioner for the Federated States — with great lucidity and modesty. It almost 
transcends belief to read how a handful of our countrymen, led by a few so-called 
Residents at the Courts of the Malay Sultans, unsupported by any diplomatic, 
political or military power, have, with the welcome aid of Chinese energy and 
industry, altered the face of the whole country. The problem and its solution are 
briefly indicated in the following sentences. 


" If I have been able to give the reader an intelligible idea of this waste of 
jungles and swamps, of mountains and rivers, sparsely inhabited by a far from 
industrious or happy people, preying on each other and on the heaven-sent 
Chinese toiler in an atmosphere of eternal heat, tempered by frequent deluges 
of tropical rain ; if I have been able to show him something of the extraordinary 
change which has passed over the country and the people, lighting the dark places, 
bringing freedom and comfort and happiness to the greatly oppressed, and wealth 
to the greatly industrious ; if now the reader sees a country covered with towns 
and villages, with roads and railways, with an enormously increased population, 
with every signs of advancement and prosperity, and if he also understands, in a 
measure at least, how this change has been brought about, I will cease to trouble 
him with further details of this unique experiment in administration." 

But the details of the unwearied "spade-work" necessary are full of stimulus, 
and for them the reader must be referred to the volume itself. 

The map and illustrations are excellent. In addition to the absorbing political 
interest there is a suggestive chapter on the character of the Malays, their customs, 
arts, literature, and their "parabolic'' or "proverbial" wisdom. 


The Norwegian North Polar Expedition, Scientific Results. Edited by Fridtjof 
Nansex. Vol. V. Published by the F. Nansen Fund for the Advancement 
of Science. London : Longmans, Green and Co., 1906. 

This volume contains a paper on the Bottom Deposits of the North Polar .Sea 
by 0. B. Boggild. The chief point brought out is the great uniformity of the 
deposits, due to the absence of land ice in the North Polar basin. Not a single 
mineral jjarticle was found over 2 mm. in diameter ; and of those present 
none were derived from volcanic rocks. Sixteen samples in all were obtained, 
most were shallow water deposits from ofl' the Siberian coast ; a few of grey deep- 
sea clay diflering only from the former in being of a rather finer consistency. The 
absence of rocks in the shallow water deposits makes it probable that there are 
no projecting rocks above the surface and that there has been little, if any, 
elevation of the sea-bottom in recent geological periods. The deep-sea clays 
showed a remaikable paucity of organic constituents, doubtless because the surface 
of the ocean is for the greater part of the year entirely ice-covered. The fora- 
minifera never reached 5 per cent, and siliceous organisms were entirely absent. 

Separate appendices deal with the chemical analyses of the deposits and with 
the Thalamophora (Foraminifera) from the deposits and from the mud of ice- 

The greater part of the volume is taken up with an investigation of " Dead- 
Water" by V. W. Ekman. This phenomenon was met with by the Fram off 
Taimur Island and is frequently experienced in some of the Norwegian Fjords. 

Sailing ships, slow steamers, or boats in tow suddenly lose way and refuse to 
answer the helm. This occurs where a layer of fresh or brackish water is present 
on top of the salt water. The author quotes a number of recorded instances and 
has done some excellent experimental work with boat models in a tank containing 
layers of water of different specific gravity. He makes it clear that a vessel 
moving at low speed generates large waves (well shown in photographs) at the 
boundary between the fresh and salt water, and that the propelling force is 
dissipated in their generation. Steering way is lost because the rudder is largely 
in a thickened layer of forward-moving fresh water. At higher speeds (varying 
with the depth of the fresh water layer and difference in density between the 


two layers) these boundary waves are not produced and "Dead-Water ' will 
not trouble the navi'ffatoi;. 

The last paper is one by Nansen on the Protozoa from the pools which formed 
on the surface of the ice-floes in summer. These were in all probability marine 
in origin, the germs being frozen into the ice when it formed, and development 
taking place with the summer thaw ; they flourished in water which had only 
1 to 2 per cent. NaCl along with numerous marine diatoms and other alg*. 

The protozoa were chiefly Infusioria, but some belonged to the Flagellata. 

Numerous drawings made at the time of collection are reproduced, but circum- 
stances did not permit of the full life-history of the organisms being made out 
nor were they specifically determined. 


Life hy the Seashore: An Introduction to Natiiral History. By Marion 
Newbigin, D.Sc. (Lond.) With many original Illustrations by Florence 
Newbigin. Cr. 8vo. Pp. viii + 344. Price 2s. 6d. net. Swan Sonnenschein and 
Co., Ltd., London, 1907. 

On the Trail of the Immigrant. By Edward A. Steiner. Demy 8vo. 
Pp. 375. Price §1.50 net. Fleming H. Revell, New York, 1907. 

A Mission in China. By W. E. Soothill. Demy 8vo. Pp. xii + 293. 
Price 5s. net. Oliphant Anderson and Ferrier, Edinburgh, 1907. 

Our Oivn Islands: An Elementary Study in Geography. By H. J. 
Mackinder, M.A. Cr. Svo. Pp. xv. + 298. Price 2s. George Philip 
and Son, Ltd., London, E.C. 

Handbook of Polar Discoveries. By A. W. Greely, Major-General L'nited 
States Army. Third Edition. Cr. Svo. Pp. xii + 325. Little, Brown and Co., 
Boston, 1907. 

The Egyptian Sudan. By J. Kelly Giffen, D.D. Illustrated. Cr. 8vo. 
Pp. 252. Price 3-^. 6d. net. Third Edition. Fleming H. Ptevell, New York, 

Highways and Byways of the Mississip)pi Valley. Written and illustrated by 
Clifton Johnson. Demy 8vo. Pp. xiv + 287. Price 8s. 6(7. net. The Macmillan 
Co., New York, 1906. 

Three Vagabonds in Friesland with a Yacht and Camera. By H. F. 
Tomalin. With Photographic Pictures by Arthur Marshall, A.E.I.B.A., 
F.R.P.S. 4to. Pp. xii-l- 229 + xx:vi. Frice Is.Qd. net. Siuipkin, Marshall and 
Co., London, 1907. 

Die Halbinsel des Sinai in ihrer Bedeutung nach Erdkunde und Geschichte 
auf Grund eigener Forschung an Ort und Stelle. Dargestellt von Professor Dr. 
E. Dagobert Schoenfeld. Demy 8vo. Pp. viii + 196. Preis 3/.8. Dietrich 
Reimer (Ernst Vohsen), Berlin, 1907. 

Dti Niger au Golfe de Guinee par le pays de Kong et le Mossi. Par le 
Captain Binger (1887-1889). Two Volumes. Hachette et Cie., Paris 1892. (Pre- 
sented by Colonel P. Durham Trotter.) 

A Junior Course of Comparative Geography, consisting of Course A : of " A 
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With 140 Pictures and Diagrams. Demy 8vo. Pp. viii 4- 239. Price 2$. 6d. net. 
George Philip and Son, Ltd., London, 1907. 

Lehrbuch der Ewhe-Sprache in Togo (Anglo-Dialekt), von A. Seidel. Pp. 176. 


The Havsa Language : Grammar {in English) and Systematic Vocabulary : 
(Hausa-German-French-English). Von A. Seidel. Pp. 292. Julius Gross, Vei- 
h.g, Heidelberg, 1906. 

Japanese Rule in Formosa. By Yosaburo Takekoshi, with Preface by 
liaron Shimpei Goto. Translated by George Braithwaite. Illustrated. 
Demy 8vo. Pp. xv + 342. Price 10s. 6rf. net. Longmans and Co., London, 

British North America : The Far West, the Home of the Salish and Dene. By 
C Hill Troct. (Native Races of the British Empire Series.) Demy 8vo. Pp. 
xiv + 263. Price Qs. net. Archibald Constable, London, 1907. 

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General Handhooh for PJiodesia. Pp. 66. British South Africa Co., London, 

Illwitrated Handbook of North-Eastern Rhodesia. Pp. .35. " Administration 
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Winter in Schiveden. Wegweiser des Schwedischen Touristenvereines. Pp. 48. 
Wahlstrom and Widstrand, Stockholm, 1906. 

Summary Report of the Geological Survey Department of Canada for 1905 and 

Geological Survey of Canada. Section of Mines. Annual Report for 1904. 
Ottawa, 1906. 

Western Australian Year-Booh, 1902-1904. (Thirteenth Edition). By Mal- 
colm A. C. Eraser, F.R.G.S., F.S.S., F.R.C. Inst. Pp. x + 1283. Perth, W.A., 

Administration Report of the Marine Survey of India for 190.5-1906. 
Bombay, 1906. 

Repoii on the Administration of the Civil and Military Station of Bangalore for 
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Pi,e,port on the Administration of Coorg for the year 1905-1906. Mercara, 1906. 

Zur Wirtschafts- und Siedlungs-Geographie von Ober-Burma und den Nord- 
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Publishers forwarding books for review will greatly oblige by marking the price in 
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By Marion I. Newbigin, D.Sc. (Lond.). 

(With Maps and Illustrations.) 

{Continued from page 192.) 
The Woods of the Valais. 

The Arolla pine. — But even at the high levels the larch has not 
matters all its own way, for there it comes into competition with the 
third important conifer of the Valais, the Arolla pine. In the Valais, 
and especially in the vicinity of the ]\Ionte Rosa massif, the Arolla pine 
occurs at the tree-limit, sometimes mingled with larch and sometimes 
forming unmixed woods of considerable extent. Like the larch, it some- 
times ascends as more or less scattered trees up to over 2400 metres 
(7874 ft,) and forms woods even above the 2300 metre line (754 6 ft.). 
It does not, however, descend as low as the larch, being much less tolerant 
of high temperatures. Where larch and pine occur in the same locality 
the pine ascends higher than the larch. The lowest point to which the 
Arolla pine descends in the Valais is 1500 metres (4921 ft.) at Lac 
Champex. It thus can hardly be said to compete with the spruce, for 
it does not as a rule flourish till levels when the spruce is beginning to 
feel the effects of the low temperature. On the other hand, the com- 
petition of the spruce drives the larch up to the region favoured by the 
Arolla pine, and in consequence either of this or of climatic changes 
Finns cemhra is gradually losing its hold, and is certainly a dying 
species. In the Arolla valley itself the trees are few in number, are in 
many cases in a dying state, and young trees to take the place of the old 
are conspicuously absent. 

Spruce and larch are familiar to all, but it may be well to point out 
some of the characters of the less familiar Arolla pine. The needles, 

vol. XXIII. R 


instead of growing in bunches of two like those of our familiar Scotch 
fir, are many in each cluster, the seeds are devoid of a " wing," and are 
large and edible, being prized as food by man, by squirrels and other 
rodents, and by birds, notably the nutcracker, which is said to live 
largely upon them in Siberia, and may be seen at Arolla constantly 
engaged in tearing the cones to pieces with its powerful bill. In the 
Alps as a rule only relatively few cones are produced, but about once in 
ten years the harvest is exceptionally abundant. The toll taken by 
man, bird and beast is, however, so heavy that there can be no doubt 
that one reason for the gradual disappearance of the tree is that very 
few seeds are allowed to germinate. In itself this is not, however, a 
sufficient reason, for the tree is more fruitful in Siberia, and its compara- 
tive barrenness in the Alps can only be the result of unfavourable con- 
ditions of life. 

The distribution of the Arolla pine is remarkable in that the area 
occupied by it in the Alps is small as compared with the vast tract 
which it occupies in Asia. Its abundance in Siberia has indeed given 
it the name of Siberian cedar. In Central Europe it occupies discon- 
nected areas in the Alps and Carpathians, where its range nearly corre- 
sponds with that of the larch. The fact that the areas are disconnected 
would to the student of distribution at once suggest that it is an old 
type, and in point of fact there is abundant evidence to prove that Pinus 
cembra had once a much more extended distribution in Europe. In brief, 
it is one of the relics of the glacial period, and its progressive disappear- 
ance before and during the human period is to be regarded as due to 
that series of changes of climate which in Scotland, for example, is leading 
to the weathering and destruction of the peat deposits laid down under 
other conditions of climate (cf. Mr. Lewis's paper, S.G.M., xxii. p. 241). 
It has been already pointed out that the larch is a tree adapted to a 
continental climate, but this is true to an even greater extent of the 
Arolla pine. It is physiologically fitted for a long severe winter and a 
sudden hot summer. According to Simony, a locality where the mean 
temperature of May is 7°C. is as unfavourable as one where the mean 
summer temperature is less than 8° C. A frost-free period of sixty-seven 
days is sufficient, but the temperature during that period must be con- 
siderable. According to Simony, in the Alps the isotherms of 0° and 5° C, 
mark its upward and lower limits. But even more than conditions of 
temperature is its extension limited by conditions of moisture. It is the 
physiological relic of a period when the air was loaded with moisture, 
and in the Alps it approaches the glaciers because their damp breath is 
like a reminiscence of an earlier time. It also favours a clay soil or a 
soil containing humus because of the power which each displays of hold- 
ing water. Further, in that in the Alps it is the westerly winds which 
bring moisture, we find that westerly exposures are much more favour- 
able than easterly ones. Thus on a valley wall facing south-west the tree 
will on the average ascend more than 300 metres (984 ft.) higher than 
on a slope in the same region facing south-east. In this case the up- 
ward extension on the south-west slope is due to the favourable conditions 
of warmth, and the lower to the favourable conditions of moisture. 



In regard to physiology there are many interesting points, all 
tending to emphasise the primitive nature of the tree. Thus growth is 
extraordinarily slow — like the elephant the AroUa pine belongs to a 
period when time was of no consequence. The normal length of life is 
350 to 400 years, and exceptionally trees may live 600 to 800 years. 
Eeproduction does not take place until the tree is sixty years old, and 
in the Alps, as already mentioned, cones are abundant only about once 
in ten years. The seedlings are shade-loving, and grow much more 
slowly than those of the spruce. Thus it takes ten years for them to 
reach a height of half a metre (H ft.), and at eighty years, when the 
larch has reached a height of 30 metres (98 ft.), and the spruce about 
22 metres (72 ft.), the Arolla pine is only about 8 metres (26 ft.) high. 
The seedlings can only thrive where there is undergrowth to shield them 
in the early part of their life, and this fact naturally limits the upward 
extension of the tree. To all the natural disadvantages which limit the 
spread of the tree, one must add that its close-textured wood is valuable, 
so that in the Alps man long since joined the already lengthy list of 
its enemies. The wood is strongly impregnated with resin, and in con- 
sequence decays very slowly. One result of this is that, under natural 
conditions, dead trunks may stand for a long period before they fall. It 
is the presence of such dead trunks in regions where there are no young 
trees that is one of the proofs of the former extension of the Arolla pine 
in the Alps. Almost everywhere in the Alps it is possible to demon- 
strate by this and other means that the area is constantly diminishing. 
In short the Arolla pine, even less than the larch, cannot effectively 
contest the supremacy of the spruce in the Valais. The pine, indeed, on 
account of the unfiivourable north-eastern exposure of the northern 
valleys, is for the most part limited to the lateral valleys to the south of 
the Rhone, and is only abundant about the Monte Rosa group. The 
accompanying table sums up the characters and distribution of the three 
trees mentioned : — 

Summary Table for Spruce, Larch, and Arolla Pine. 

Height of Tree. 


Limit of 

Maximum elpva- 
tion i-eaclied. 



At 10 yrs. 

At 80 yrs. 
22 m. 

Spruce, . 


2000-2100 m. 

U-H ni. 

30-40 yrs. 

Moisture in air 

or soil essen- 


Larch, . 

-r c. 

2300-2400 m. 

4 m. 

30 m. 

15-20 yrs. 

Full exposure 
to sua essen- 


0-0" c. 

2300-2400 m. 

•5 m. 

8-9 m. 

60 yrs. 

Large amount 
of moisture 
in air or soil 

The heights are given iu metres, and the temperature is the lowest mean annual the tree can 


Of the other conifers which occur in the Valais, it is only necessary 
to mention in passing the mountain pine (Pimis montana), which is 
infrequent, but sometimes forms pure cultures, as, for example, at 
Grachen in the Saas valley. Here it occurs in its upright form, the 
curious dwarf form which is common in Austria at the tree-limit being 
uncommon in Switzerland. As already mentioned, the Scotch fir 
(Pinus sylvestris) is somewhat uncommon as a forest-former. It occurs 
on the floor of the Rhone valley, where the soil has the necessary 
arenaceous character, and also sometimes on moraines. It does not, 
according to Christ, ascend above 1500 metres (4921 ft.). 

A short note on the actual conditions in certain valleys may serve to 
make the foregoing general description more vivid. Take, for example, 
the Val de Bagnes. For much of its extent the sides of this valley are 
luxuriantly clothed with spruce. The highest village is Fionnay (really 
a mayen and not a village), which stands at an elevation of 1497 metres 
(4910 ft.: cf figure on p. 188). Round the little group of houses and 
hotels fir-woods are abundant, and mixed with the dominant species, 
especially at the margin of the torrent, at the edges of clearings, or 
generally in places unsuited to the spruce, the larch occurs. Walking 
up the valley from Fionnay, it will be found that the spruce persists 
until one has ascended a vertical height of about 100 metres (328 ft.), 
but at a height of some 1590 metres (5116 ft.) it is replaced to a large 
extent by larch. The transition between the two types of wood is very 
striking here, and it is interesting to see how the few remaining spruces 
seem to seek shelter beneath the taller larches. In the region where 
the spruce is dominant the surface of the ground is either covered with 
pasture-land or with forest, but in the larch region the grass flourishes 
beneath the sparsely scattered trees, thus giving a combination of wood 
and pasture which is rarely seen in Switzerland. 

On continuing up the valley, we find that the last larches, Avhich are 
also the last trees, are seen near the inn at Mauvoisin at a height of 
about 1800 metres, the valley above being narrow and almost sunless 
even in midsummer. Lower down the valley trees ascend about 200 
metres (or C56 ft.) higher, but here the valley is wider, and therefore 
more fully exposed to the sun. General 1}% we may say of the Val de 
Bagnes that the tree-limit varies from 1800 to 2000 metres (5905 to 
6562 ft.) according to the exposure, and larches form the limiting form, 
the Arolla pine being absent. 

If the traveller continue his journey to the head of the valley, and 
then cross one of the glacier passes to Arolla, he will find that while he 
left behind the last tree at 1800 metres (5905 ft.), he finds the first 
trees in the Arolla valley at from 2200 to 2300 metres (7218 to 7546 ft.), 
that is, about 400 to 500 metres (1300 to 1640ft.) higher up. Further, 
while in the valley which he has left behind the larch formed the tree- 
limit, the first trees which he encounters here are Arolla pines. This fact 
the guide-books do not fail to emphasise ; but the traveller who, stimu- 
lated by Baedeker, looks forward with interest to seeing this tree, will be 
greatly disappointed when his eyes fall upon the aged and decrepit 
trunks which surround the hotels, and are outlined against that dreary 



waste of stone which is the chief feature of the Combe d'Arolla. Let 
him continue his journey over to Zermatt and he will find there, at an 
elevation of 2300 metres or more, fine and flourishing woods of Arolla 
pines, which constitute indeed one of the great beauties of the valley. 
As other series of valleys would give similar results, we are justified in 
saying briefly that the tree-limit rises as the Zermatt region is ap- 
proached, and that Avhere the limit is high the Arolla pine forms the 
limiting species ; where it is low this species tends to be absent. We 
have seen above that the zone of cultivation also rises as the Zermatt 
region is approached. 

The explanation has been so clearly set forth in a series of recent 

Mean elevation of the surface of Switzeriaud. (From de Q\iervam after Liez.) 

German papers that it can be given very briefly, the more briefly as the 
results of these papers are expressed in maps which we reproduce here. 

In the first place, a paper on the mean elevation of Switzerland, by 
H. Liez,^ shows that the greater part of the Valais has a mean elevation 
of over 2000 metres (6562 ft.), and a considerable area in the vicinity of 
the Monte Rosa group, a mean elevation of over 2500 metres (8202 ft.). 
Comparing with this the results obtained by J. Jegerlehner,- in a study 
of the snowline, we find that this line rises highest (3200 metres or 
10,499 ft.) in the region of the greatest mean elevation, while Ed. 
Imhof ^ has shown that the same thing is true of the tree limit, which is 
highest in the Monte Rosa region, the region of greatest mean elevation, 
and next highest in the Engadine, where the mean elevation is almost 

1 " Die Verteilung der mittleren Hohe in der Sch.\\ei7."—Jahresbericht d. Geographischen 
Gesellschaft von Bern, xviii. (1903). 

2 Beitrdgez. (reophi/sik, v. (1901-:2). 

3 " Die Waldgrenze in d. Seliweiz," T. cit. iv. (1899-90). 



as great. As throughout Switzerland it can be shown that the snowline 
and the tree-limit vary together, the distance between them remaining 

Isoliypses of tree-limit. (From de Quervain aftt-r Imliof. ) 

Isohypses of suowliue. (From ile Quervaiu after Jegerleliner. ) 

approximately constant, it is reasonable to suppose that both are deter- 
mined by a similar cause, which has been shown by A. de Qiiervain ^ to 

1 "Die Hebungd. atmospliari.sclien Isotliermen in d. Schweizer Alpen u. ihrer Beziehung 
;renzen."— r. cit., vi. (1903-4y 

z. d. Hobengrt 



be the special conditions of temperature which exist in regions of great 
mean elevation. This author has taken the daily temperature readings at 

Isotherms at a height of 1500 m., July, 1 p.m. (From de Quervain.) 

Isotherms at a height of loOO m., Jan., 7 a.m. (From de Quervain. ) 

7 A.i\[. and 1 P.M. for a large number of stations of different altitudes 
throughout the year for a ten years' period, and after reducing the tem- 
peratures to a mean level of 1500 metres (4921 ft.) has plotted the 
results in the form of a series of isotherms on the map of Switzerland. 


Two of these maps are reproduced here. The result is to show that, 
owing to the conditions of radiation, etc., which exist in mountain 
regions, the temperature at midday is considerably greater in regions of 
great mean elevation than in regions of lower mean elevation, through- 
out the greater part of the year. In other words, a place in the Zermatt 
region, or in the Engadine, at an elevation of 1500 metres, would have 
at midday a considerably higher temperature than a place of the same 
elevation in the Canton Ticino, or one in the vicinity of Lake Geneva. 
This statement is true for all the months from February to November, 
but not in January and December. The amount of the difference varies 
with the season, being greatest (5'5°) in July and least in February 
(3"5°). On the other hand, at seven o'clock in the morning the elevation 
of the isotherms is much less conspicuous even in the warmer months, 
and in the colder months there is then a depression of the isotherms at 
great elevations (cf. map p. 231). That is, at seven o'clock on a January 
morning a place in the Nicolaithal would be considerably colder than 
one of corresponding elevation in the lowlands. As it is the midday 
temperatui'e which specially counts in the life of plants, and in the 
melting of snow, the results obtained by de Quervain, explain the eleva- 
tion of both the snowline and the tree-limit in the Yalais. The 
causation of the elevation of the isotherms on approaching the great 
mountain masses is the conditions of radiation which exist there as com- 
pared with those existing in regions of less mean elevation. 

In the Alps of the Yalais generally a vertical distance of about 890 
metres separates the snowline from the tree-limit, but it is rather inter- 
esting to note tliat in Val de Bagnes the two are separated by a vertical 
distance of 1000 metres (or 3281 ft.). The reason, as de Quervain 
points out, is to be sought in the shape of the valley. The mountains 
reach a considerable elevation (Grand Combin, 4317 metres, or 14,164 
ft.), but the valleys are deep narrow gorges, whose walls, as in the 
vicinity of Mauvoisin, may shut out the sun save for a short period of 
the day. The elevation of the mountains raises the snowline, but the 
shape of the valley lowers the tree-limit, hence the unusual distance 
between the two here, and hence also the absence of suitable ground for 
the Arolla pine. 

III. — TnK Alps of thp: Valais. 

We have finally to consider that most important part of the 
Valaisiaii area, the Alps or high pastures. From all that has been 
said already of climate, eleA^ation and natural productions, it is obvious 
that the possibilities of cultivation in the region must be strictly 
limited. The flat floor of the Rhone valley with its constant liability 
to inundation, the lower terraced slopes of the main valley, and ])arts of 
the larger lateral valleys, constitute the whole available area, and even 
so cultivation in the higher parts is beset with many difficulties. The 
mineral products of the region are insignificant, manufactures almost 
absent, and yet the canton in 1904 had an estimated population of 


116,843 ^ persons, giving a, density of 56 per square mile as contrasted 
witli a density of 11 for Sutherland, and 21 for Inverness. Further, 
the population is increasing, the estimate for 1904 showing an increase 
of 2 per cent, on the 1900 figures. This obviously means some source 
of wealth which has not been yet considered, and though we must not 
forget the "tourist industry," yet the great source of wealth in the 
canton is certainly the cow. 

If we may take the sheep as a symbol for the Scottish Highlands, 
then the cow may serve as a fitting symbol for the Valais, as for much 
of Switzerland. The development of the dairying industry again 
depends upon the abundant growth of grass in the alps. 

It would be a matter of great interest, as illustrating the inter- 
relations of history and geography, to trace in the case of the hill-folk 
of Switzerland and the Highlands the relation of the mental and moral 
qualities to the occupation. For that this is not the place, but in pass- 
ing we may just note that in both cases the open life on the mountains 
with the flocks has bred an unconquerable love of freedom and in- 
dependence, and a warrior spirit, which has time and again left its 
mark on the pages of history. Our language is deeply impressed with 
the Oriental imagery wdiich makes the shepherd the type of gentleness, 
but in point of fact the herd's life, with its perpetual conflict with 
nature, does not, among the Westerns at least, produce such a spirit. 

Again, no doubt because of the constant contact with the forces of 
nature, alike in Switzerland and in Scotland, the people of the hills are 
profoundly and typically religious. This attribute expresses itself in 
different forms it is true, but even the most confirmed Protestant can 
hardly fail to be touched by those crude religious emblems Avhich are 
dotted over the Swiss hills, and which, hardly less than the churches 
of the Scottish Highlands, suggest the connection between the pastoral 
life and strong religious instinct. 

Leaving aside those sociological points, it is necessary to consider in 
detail what exactly an alp is. In the list of the zones of vegetation in 
the Valais given above, the third or alpine zone was stated to be that 
between the tree-limit and the snowline. Very little reflection will, 
however, make it clear that over a large proportion of this area the 
vegetation is not sufficiently great in amount to form a pasturage. 
Great expanses of the surface are covered by moraines or by screes and 
rock-rubbish, and other regions are precipitous, and devoid of any cover- 
ing of soil. Thus the alpine region is the region in which the high 
pastures occur, but not the region in which the surface is predominantly 
pasturage. Again, nimble as the Swiss cow is, there is a limit to its 
agility, and therefore, although the pasturages are by no means, as the 
stranger is apt to assume, level areas, there are necessarily regions of 
moderate gradient, AVhat, then, are these grass-covered regions which 
occur throughout the high ground of Switzerland ? Eoughly speaking, 
the alps are mountain shelves bordering the valleys, and these shelves 
form pasturages because they mark the sites of the old glaciers and are 

1 Statesman's Year Book, 1906, 



thus covered with morainic matter, -NA'hich forms a fertile soil. The accom- 
panying three sections across parts of the Val de Bagnes show the exact 
position of the alps. It will be noted that the valley in which the present 
torrent flows becomes increasingly gorge-like as one ascends the valley, 

Fig. 1. 

Sections across the Yal de Bagnes, to show the position of the alps, 
and vertical scales are the same. 

The horizontal 

but whatever the shape of the existing valley, there is clearly shown at 
either side the platform which marks the remains of the bed of the old 
glacier, and here the alp is situated. Thus, in climbing the side of the 
valley one has first a very steep rise from the valley floor, then a 
gentle slope — the alp, which ends suddenly (Fig. 1) or gradually 


(Figs. 2 and 3) against the base of the great peaks. Fig. 3 ^ is taken 
above the level at which trees occur in the Val de Bagnes, but Fig. 1 is 
of great interest as showing the position of the woods relative to the alps, 
and the position of what are known as the mayens. Where the first 
part of tlie valley wall has a considerable slope, but is not absolutely 
precipitous, it is usually clothed with trees. Where the slope is gentle, 
as especially happens where a lateral stream has formed a considerable 
cone, then there is a more or less considerable stretch of pasturage, care- 
fully fenced in (see illustration p. 236). It is here that the cattle come 
in spring while the snow is still on the upper pasturages. When they 
are driven to the high ground in the middle of June, the grass is allowed 
to grow again, and by the earlier part of August it is cut as hay, to be 
stored for use in late autumn or winter. Between forest and mayen, as 
the figures suggest, there is a certain amount of rivalry as it were, and 
it is to extend these early pasturages that in parts of Switzerland 
excessive forest destruction has gone on. The mayen forms a transi- 
tion between the cultivated land and the alp, and the fact that it is 
less difficult of access than the alp makes it possible to cut and store its 
grass as hay. The alp, if one may put the matter so, is so difficult of 
access that its produce must be transported in the compact form of 

One other point, both mayen and alp have been made by the 
denuding action of ice and water — we need not stop here to discuss 
the relative action of the two — but these forces are also their great 
enemies. Both alp and mayen are bounded above by steep slopes, and 
that in a region where serial denudation is extraordinarily rapid. Both 
are in consequence in constant risk of being overwhelmed by avalanches 
of stones and mud, while as the glaciers advance and retreat their 
moraines may be pushed over fertile stretches of pasturage. In other 
words, the forces which made the pasturages are still in action. Again, 
the position of the alps is such that they are naturally traversed by 
streams of w^ater from the heights above, such streams being of all 
dimensions. The soil of the alp is never very thick, but the dense 
covering of grass and herbage protects it from the denuding action of 
the small runnels so long as it is intact. If, however, the pasturages 
are badly managed and allowed to be overcrowded, then the covering 
may be completely destroyed, the dark soil beneath is exposed and is 
soon channelled and carried away. In the Val de Bagnes the cows are 
milked on the alp, and small areas of destroyed pasture of this kind 
were very obvious round the huts Avhere the cows are collected for 
milking. The grass and alpine plants have here disappeared, and are 
replaced by a scanty covering of nettle, Chenopodium, dock and 
dandelion. Where si^ch patches occur on the slope the soil is being 
rapidly washed away. 

1 It is iuterestiiig to note the resemblance between this section and the diagranimatic 
representation of an alpine valley given by Professor Kilian in an article on "Glacial 
Erosion and the Formation of Terraces," in La Giographie, xiv. 5, 1906. To this article 
reference should be made for an explanation of the causation of the peculiar shape of the 
valley. See also Penck's Die. Alpeu im Eisuitalter. 



In regard to the paths to the alps, a point which was very notice- 
able in the Val de Bagnes is worth mention in connection with the 
evolution of ways of communication. The valley is still unsophisti- 
cated, and therefore the paths are for the cows and not primarily for 
the tourists — there are no special tourists' paths. Now, wherever the 
gradient is steep the path is admirably marked, but no sooner does the 
ground become easy than the path dies away and is lost. The reason 
is obvious. When the ascent is steep the cows must necessarily keep 
together, and the path must be kept in repair ; where it is easy each 

Mayeli du lii-M.T.-5, N al lU- ougUL-s. 1 lie uul.> ,.ie jjiuce^ uii a uoiic iJH)U..iit (lowu 
by the lateral stream to the right. Note the gentle slope to the left which 
forms the niayen or spring pasturage. The trees are spruce, mingled with 

cow wanders off on a' path of her own in search of some succulent herb, 
and the herdsman allows them to scatter until the a})proach of a steep 
region necessitates their collection. This is very striking in the path 
over the Col de I'enCtre, which is a mule-path according to the guide- 
books, but which in point of fact, in crossing the pasturage of Chermon- 
tane, simply disappears, though above and below it is well marked. 



The plants of the alps. — We have thus seen that the alp is a relic of 
a past period of greater glaciation, and as its soil is thus the rock 
dt^bris derived from the neighbouring mountains, there are naturally 
great differences in the fertility of the different alps. We must next 
consider the nature of the plants produced by the alps in order to 
learn wherein consists the value of a fertile alp. As compared with the 
more familiar conditions which exist in this country, the striking 
feature is that the grasses are relatively less important. In this 
country the chief fodder plants are the grasses and various Leguminosse, 
especially the clovers. The reason is not primarily the special food 
value of these plants as compared with others, but the absence of strong 
distasteful odours, of much indigestible supporting tissue, and of poisonous 
extractives, etc. In Switzerland a very large number of plants are 
consumed as fodder, and of the three which are specially prized by 
the herdsmen as signs of fertility on an alp, only one is a grass. 
These three precious plants are Poa alpina, a grass which is not un- 
common on the hills of Scotland, a plantain (Plantago alpina), and one 
of the Umbelliferse, Meum mntelUna by name. A large number of 
grasses, Leguminosse, Compositse, and so on are also eaten, but relatively 
the grasses are less important than with us. Further, when valley grass 
or hay is compared with alpine hay or grass, it is found that the alpine 
plants are richer in proteids and fats, while they are poorer in cellulose 
than the valley forms. The reason is to be sought in the special con- 
ditions of existence of the mountain plants. As already explained, they 
are during the short growing period exposed to very strong insolation. 
The bright light checks growth, so that the plants tend to become 
tufted and short-stemmed. At the same time there is a slighter 
development of mechanical tissue, so that they are softer and less rigid. 
The result is that plants which the cattle will not eat or cannot digest on 
the low ground are sought after as food above. Again, it is well known 
that many alpines tend to reproduce themselves vegetatively rather 
than by seeds. The grass Poa alpina, for instance, in its viviparous 
variety, has leafy buds in place of flowers. Associated with the vege- 
tative method of reproduction, and with the necessity of storing food 
for the long cold winter, there is a strong tendency to accumulate food- 
products in the leaves. We might perhaps sum up the difterences by 
saying that the plants of the high alps have to concentrate into a period 
of about three months the whole of their activities, and that in conse- 
quence the growth there is richer but less voluminous than on the 
lower ground. Another point of view is to say that as only a few 
herbivores naturally inhabit the high alps, the plants of that locality do 
not need the means of protection necessary for plants growing at less 

Whatever the immediate cause, the result, so far as man is concerned, 
may be realised by quoting from Anderegiii's book ^ some figures for the 
alps of the Valais. There are in the canton 422 alps, which have a 

1 Schweizerische Alpwirtschaft. Ulustrirtes Lehrbuch. Yon Professor Felix Anderegg. 
3 Parts. Bern, 1899. 


capital value of nearly £180,000 (ih million francs) and yield a net 
profit of £28,000 (705,000 francs) per annum. This works out at 
nearly a pound per " kuhstoss " (i.e. the proportion of alp required for 
the keep of one cow during the sojourn on the alp). The figures, of 
course, include a number of young cattle, etc., which are not directly 
productive. Where cows in milk alone are considered it is found that 
the net profit obtained from each cow during its eighty-eight days' 
sojourn on the alp is about £2, 10s. (the actual figure is 62 francs; 
see Anderegg, ii. p. 507) in butter, milk, and cheese. In other words, 
every day spent on the alp by each cow brings a net profit of sevenpence 
to its owner. Owing to the difficulty of transport, due to the position 
of the alps, the milk is for the most part converted into cheese, the 
whey being given to the muscular-looking pigs which accompany the 
herd to the alps. As the cheese is not consumed on the alp, it is 
obvious that every summer the alp is losing more than is returned to it 
in the form of manure. How is this waste made up for ? To some 
extent it is made up for by the system of irrigation which, as already 
mentioned, prevails in the Valais. The irrigation channels contain 
glacier water, or " glacier milk " as the Germans call it, which is simply 
loaded with glacier mud. The fine particles of this mud fertilise the 
soil in precisely the same fashion as the Nile mud fertilises Egypt. 
Again, even where systematic irrigation does not go on, denudation is 
proceeding so rapidly all round that the surface of the alps is in constant 
process of renewal. In this connection it will be remembered that, as 
the alps are geologically of recent origin, and consist of a vast number 
of kinds of rocks of very different hardness, rock waste is much more 
rapid than in an old land surface like the Highlands of Scotland, where 
the softer rocks have long since been worn away to form the Lowlands, 
and only the resistant forms remain. 

It was pointed out in the early part of this paper that by far the 
most impressive way of entering the Valais is to cross the Gemmi pass, 
and gaze from its summit over the great cleft of the Rhone valley to the 
giant peaks of the Pennine Alps towering up to the sky. The fore- 
going account may serve to show that the instinct which draws the 
attention first to the mountain wall is geographically the right one, for 
almost every feature of the geography of the canton is determined by 
the mountains. It is the mountain ring which produces the warm, dry 
climate, while the glaciers supply the water necessary to make up for 
the deficient rainfall. Further, it is the scouring action of the glaciers 
which supplies the rock-floor upon which the whole fertility of the 
region depends. Even the catastrophes which often overwhelm not only 
pasturages but villages are in reality but part of the beneficent action 
by which nature perpetually fertilises anew the Alpine lands. The 
geographer who crosses the turbid Rhone on his homeward journey may 
carry his thought one step further and reflect that pasturages and 
mayens, even the great lake itself, are but temporary phenomena, but 
stages in the process by which the alps are in process of being ground 
down to a mere core like the Scottish Highlands. Meantime, however, 
whether from wholly geographical causes or not, there can be no doubt 


that the Alpine regions benefit a proportionately much larger number of 
persons than do the Highlands. In the alps one sees man as, at least to 
some extent, the conqueror of nature, rather than as the conquered, as 
in the Highlands. 


By V. DiNGELSTEDT, Corr. Member of the R.S.G.S. 

The Cossacks have perhaps primarily an historical and political interest, 
for they have powerfully contributed to the extension and maintenance 
of the huge Russian Empire ; but they possess also considerable interest 
for geographers and ethnographers, for they occupy an area more than 
double the size of that of the United Kingdom, their number equals 
that of the population of some independent states, and their ethnic 
composition is more complicated than that of many other nations. 

The Cossacks are now attracting the particular attention of the 
civilised world ; for, after having won for Russia immense territories, 
they are now actively employed in crushing the internal troubles, due to 
popular discontent and a desire for change in the political and social 

Literature about Cossacks is not abundant. There are many 
erroneous notions about them, and the author of the present article deems 
it useful to gather together what is known about them just at the 
present moment, when they are playing such a conspicuous part on the 
scene of contemporary history, and perhaps are on the point of under- 
going themselves some important transformations in accordance with 
new popular tendencies incompatible with the existence of Cossackdom. 

Cossacks are not a nation, nor a particular tribe nor race: they are a 
distinct and privileged part of the heterogeneous Russian population, a 
social body of soldier-husbandmen, a class (soslovid), an hereditary order 
(confririe) with its own duties, rights, privileges, customs, manners and 
traditions. They are not governed by the common law, but by rules 
constituting a part of the military code. They are not burghers nor 
citizens, but militiamen, and their interests are not those of common 
Russian subjects. 

Napoleon i. was strongly impressed by the deeds of the Cossacks ; 
he prophesied that in a century Europe would be either republican or 
Cossack. It does not seem that the great leader proved himself a 
great prophet, but he did not certainly much err in attributing to 
Cossacks an eminent importance and value. 

Let us cast a glance on the origin of Cossacks and their past prowess, 
before considering the territory they occupy, their divisions, their 
strength, occupations, customs, character, etc. 

Name and origin. — The name of Cossack — Russian KosaJ: — has been 
variously derived from the Turkish hazdk, meaning a robber, and other 
words in different languages signifying " an armed man," " a sabre," " a 


rover," " a goat," " a cassock," etc. It was first heard of in the tenth 
century. Manoudi calls them Kechek, and Nestor somewhat later 
gives them the name of Kassghar. For the Russian mind the name of 
Cossack conveys an idea of a free, rough, weather-beaten, and rather 
happy fellow. There is a Russian saying: — 

" It is for that 
The Cossack is so fat : 
From sweet repast 
To calm repose 
He turns." 

It is probable, however, that this description refers more to the past 
than the present state of Cossackdom, and gives a clue to its remote 

According to Scherer (Annals of Russia Minor) the first Cossacks were 
descended from Komans obliged to flee before the invasion of Tartars, 
who in 1272, under the leadership of Batu-khan, came to occupy the 
part of the empire left by Tchinghis-khan. 

The Komans settled at first in the lower Yaik (Uralsk), but, later on, 
on the approach of Batu-khan, were forced to flee as far as the Dnieper 
and the Don, and take refuge in the caves, the islands and the marshes 
of the lower parts of these rivers. Hence they made their raids into 
the neighbouring states and enlisted all the roving and discontented 
elements, Tartars, Kalmucks, etc., for rapine and pillage. They gave 
origin to a number of hordes, some of whom, after many adventures, 
settled in the islands of the Dnieper below its falls, and thus formed 
the Zaporog Setcli. 

Zaporog Cossacks were the prototype of Cossacks. The world has 
never seen such an audacious, enterprising, and terrible band of military 
men, with proverbial courage. In order to obtain admission to their 
number, it was required from the candidate to profess the Greek faith, 
to be a bachelor, to pass in a boat against the current the thirteen 
cataracts of the Dnieper, to have killed ten of his enemies, to be an 
excellent shooter, to be able to swim across the Dnieper, and so on. 
Their chiefs were elected every year. They had almost everything in 
common, and they rigorously excluded women from their midst. About 
seventy thousand strong, they became a scourge to all their neighbours, 
a menace even for Russia at the time when Ataman Mazeppa made 
friendship with Charles Xii., the king of Sweden. After the battle of 
Poltava, and later under Catherine ii., they were partly dispersed and 
partly annihilated. 

Two things were necessary for the extension of Cossack states — 
space and discontent ; and both Russia and Poland in the sixteenth 
century had plenty of those gangs of adventurers, marauders, vagabonds, 
robbers, outcasts, cut-throats who, seeking freedom and fleeing from 
pursuit, were able to traverse badly delimited frontiers, and establish 
themselves on some masterless lands on the wooded banks of the 
Dnieper, the Don, Ural, etc. 

These predatory gangs of malcontents could not faiPto be organised 


under the headship of more distinguished men. To their formation into 
more orderly communities further contributed Polish and Lithuano- 
Eussian lords, and later on the princes of Moscovia, who impressed on 
them the ideas of knighthood and the stamp of patriotism. 

The Polish landlords obtained as a grant from their kings 
immense territories in the southern steppes of Russia, and, in order to 
people them, they promised to peasants willing to settle in these regions 
freedom from taxes and duties and impunity from any crimes they had 
committed. The measure proved successful, the formerly uninhabited 
steppes changed their aspect, they were peopled and opened to culture ; 
the stanitsas, at first independent one from another, combined for the 
election of a common chief or ataman (hetman); and already in 1649 a 
daring Cossack chief on the Dnieper, Hetman Khmelnitsky, had suc- 
ceeded in establishing a semi-autonomous state, at first allied to Poland 
and later transferring its allegiance to Russia (1654); other Cossack 
communities at the end of the fifteenth century, after the partition of 
the south-eastern steppes between Poland, Muscovia and Turkey, rose 
to considerable importance, acquired lands and rich booty, and were able 
to wage wars with all their neighbours, and especially the Moslems. 

The Tzars of Moskov knew how to profit by the valour and audacity 
of these turbulent freelances; they supplied them with bread, powder 
and lead, granted them lands and privileges, addressed them compli- 
ments, recognised their liberties, and at the same time prepared the 
way for submitting them to their rule. 

After Zaporog's slez of Cossacks, crushed and suppressed by Catherine ii. 
(1792), the next great colony of Cossacks, and the most important one 
at the present day, was established in the middle of the sixteenth 
century, on the Don and Medvieditsa and the shores of the Azov Sea. 

The first Don Cossacks ataman which history mentions, bore the 
Tartar name of Sariazman, but the colony consisted mainly of outlaws 
and fugitives, rascolnick (dissidents) and adventurers from Russia, and 
Poland, and the Crimea. In the second half of the same century these 
colonists had already succeeded in forming powerful and aggressive com- 
munities. Lately their number has considerably increased by Zaporog 
Cossacks, the people of Ukraine, runaways, brigands and adventurers 
from all eastern Europe, all willing to enter into the ranks of Cossacks 
in order to enjoy liberty and the adventurous life of freelances and 

In 1570 the Don Cossacks asked for and received the protection 
of Ivan the Terrible, but his hand did not weigh heavy on them, and 
long afterwards they could repeat the saying : " The Tzar reigns in 
Moskov and the Cossack on the Don." 

In 1580, under the leadership of Yermak, an absconded criminal, a 
gang of Don Cossacks conquered a part of Siberia and thus laid the 
foundation of the now important Siberian Cossacks' army. 

The power and prosperity of the Don Cossacks only increased 
their turbulence and aggi'essive spirit, and Peter the Great found it 
necessary to subdue them ; he crushed their revolt under Bulavin, 
reduced their territory, and forbade further recruiting of their ranks. 



In the course of time the number and the importance of the 
Cossack settlements went on increasing. In order to push forward 
the frontiers of their domain the Russian princes did not want so much 
to wage great wars, as to wage small ones, in the Caucasus and in 
Central Asia, against Asiatic tribes, mostly divided among themselves. 
They wanted for that purpose not great regular armies, but armed, 
warlike, adventurous, vigilant populations, exactly such as these free- 
booters and daring adventurers who formed Cossackdom, and were 
recruited from the discontented elements of the nation, were capable 
of offering. The Cossacks constituted also an excellent distraction 
from internal troubles. Being compelled to defend their frontiers from 
the incursions of piratical tribes, and hoping to extend their domains at 
the first opportunity, the Russian princes, by granting lands and privileges, 
founded more and more Cossack colonies. Thus have been founded on 
the lower course of the Kuban the Tchernomorsky Cossack army, mainly 
from the remains of the Zaporogs ; the Terek-Kislar Cossack army 
in the Northern Caucasus ; the Grebenskoy Cossack army in the second 
half of the sixteenth century from the fugitives from the Don, after 
the punitive expedition of the stolnic Murashkin ; the Mosdoc Cossack 
army, from the Cossacks settled at first on the Volga and the Khoper, 
and others. The cordon line of Cossack settlements went on con- 
tinually increasing from the Sea of Azov to the Caspian, and from the 
Caspian along the Ural across Orenburg towards the Kirghiz steppes, the 
Altai, Semiryechinsk, Baikal, and Transbaikal up to the river Amoor 
and the Pacific, In the rear of the Cossacks' fortified line, protected 
by them, settled Russian agriculturists, affording also recruits for the 

Historical. — We have no intention of entering into any details of the 
stirring and bloodstained history of Cossacks, but it would be hardly 
possible to understand their psychology without remembering some 
at least of the great deeds which have rendered them so famous. 
In the history of mankind, as in that of the earth, the past is never 
completely past; it leaves its traces and reacts on the present. The 
actual state of the Cossacks is powerfully influenced by their glorious 
traditions, which live in their souls and continue to inspire them. 

The halcyon days of Cossacks belong to the seventeenth century, when 
Zaporog Cossacks fought as allies of Poland against Turkey under 
the headship of Konassewitch Sahaydatchny (1621), and somewhat 
later against the Poles themselves under the orders of Bogdan Khmel- 
nitsky, who rallied around his standard fifty thousand men. After 
having obtained some signal victories over Polish generals, Khmel- 
nitsky proclaimed the emancipation of the peasants, raised up the 
Don Cossacks, reinforced his army by Tartar troops, and with an army 
of 400,000 strong, marched to Germany, and was arrested only by the 
heroic resistance of a Polish noble of English origin, Andrew Firley. 
After the convention of Zborov (1G49) the same Khmelnitsky invaded 
Moldavia, ransomed its Gospodar, and occupied Podolia. 

In 1654 he concluded at Pereiaslav a convention with the Tzar 
Alexander Michailovitch, by the terms of which a portion of the 


Ukraine, with its Cossack population, submitted under conditions of a 
considerable independence to the dominion of Russia. This sovereignty 
was often only nominal, the Cossacks of Ukraine remained restless, 
they changed their allegiance now and then, broke into fresh revolts, 
menaced all their neighbours, shed torrents of blood, until at last they 
were suppressed and partly annihilated by the vigorous action of 
General Tekeli, sent by Catherine ii. (1790). History has preserved 
many narratives of the extraordinary exploits of the Zaporog Cossacks ; 
they were renowned as reckless corsairs, they managed with admirable 
ability their light boats (czat/Id), pushed them to the estuary of the 
Dnieper, penetrated into the Azov and Black Seas, and, like the ancient 
Danes, wherever they made good landing, they spread slaughter, con- 
flagration, and ruin. The most renowned of the Cossack leaders or 
hetmans were : John Mazeppa, elected as hetman by the Ukraine 
Cossacks in 1687 — he attempted to throw off the sovereignty of the 
Tzar Peter the Great, took part in the battle of Poltava, after which he 
fled (1709) to Bender and there died; Yermak — the conqueror of 
Siberia ; Stenka Razin, the famous robber, who succeeded in alluring 
200,000 men to his standard; Bulavin, Nekrassof who revolted against 
Peter the Great ; Minaef, Krasnoshchekof, Platov, leader of Cossacks in 
the war with Napoleon ; Zelesniak, the leader of the rebellion of 1768 ; 
Gouba, Sava, Rozycki, Pugatchef and others. 

With each of these names a whole epopee is connected in the 
Cossack mind, and they chant their heroes and transmit their high 
deeds from generation to generation. At the time of Catherine ii. the 
Cossack name was so renowned that many of the Russian grandees 
and generals caused themselves to be inscribed as Cossacks (among 
others Count Potemkin). From the famous Zaporog and Little-Russian 
Cossacks have survived to our days a certain number of landowners 
(Cossacks) outside of the village communities who still enjoy greater 
prosperity than the rest. 

Territory. — Cossack colonies occupy now a line extending for about 
6790 miles from east to west and about 870 from south to north, or 
42° 57' to 55° 28' N. lat. ; from the Don and the Sea of Azov to the 
district of Vladivostok on the Sea of Japan, and from Terek to Orenburg 
they cover an area of about 220,000 square miles, that is, more than 
that of the German Empire. There are ten distinct Cossack colonies, 
or voislvs, each owning their land and waters granted to them in 
perpetuity by letters patent of the Tzar. The most extensive Cossack 
territory is that of the Don, having an area of 63,532 square miles, 
then come in order of their extension : the Orenburg colony, with 35,792 
square miles; Transbaikal colony, 32,953 square miles; Ural, 27,221 
square miles; Kuban, 25,566; Siberian, 21,560; Terek, 8220; As- 
trachan, 3135 ; and that of Amoor, 2542 square miles. The total 
population of these extensive lands is about three millions, of whom 
71 per cent, are Cossacks and 29 per cent. non-Cossacks. The Imperial 
charters granting to the Cossacks land and privileges issued formerly 
have been recently renewed and solemnly announced to different Cossack 
armies, gathered in their respective head-quarters. We reproduce here 


the Edict, dated 24 January 1906, addressed to the Don Cossacks. It 
runs as follows : — 

" To Our faithfully dear and valiard Bon Cossacks Army. 

" Since the first days of its existence, more than three hundred years 
ago, the glorious voisko of Don has served faithfully the Tzar and 
Fatherland. Relentlessly pursuing the bright goal then opened for 
Russia in the development of her formidable might, it has ever since 
heroically and with an unalterable, limitless devotion of all her sons 
to the throne and Russian State, defended its frontiers, and, constitut- 
ing thus a bulwark on its borders, contributed to its extension. 

" In the years of heavy trials sent to the Russian Empire by the 
inscrutable designs of Providence, all the Don Cossacks, animated with 
equal affection and courage and always placing themselves in fclie ranks 
of the defenders of the honour and the dignity of the Russian power, 
have acquired by the spirit of military virtues always inherent in them 
and by their countless glorious deeds immortal fame, and the gratitude 
of the Fatherland. 

"And now in the just-terminated war with Japan, and particularly 
in the actual heavy days of trouble, the Don Cossacks, strictly following 
the behests of their ancestors to serve the Tzar and the Russians faith- 
fully and truly, have served as a model to all the true sons of the 

" In recognition for such a devoted, indefatigable, and faithful service, 
We declare to the valiant and Our dear Don army Our particular monarchi- 
cal benevolence, and confirm herewith all the rights and privileges granted 
to them by Our august Forefathers now resting in God, pledging Our 
Imperial word for the inviolability of their actual mode of service, 
which has brought to them historical glory, as well as of all their goods 
and possessions acquired by the labour, services, and blood of their 
ancestors and confirmed by Imperial edicts." 

Similar edicts have been also granted recently to the Orenburg 
Cossacks army (23rd February 1906), the Ural Cossacks, the Terek 
Cossacks army (23rd April 1906), the Siberian Cossacks, and the 
Kuban Cossacks. 

The lands of the Cossacks are unevenly distributed between 41'' and 
55° N. latitude, in the plains and in the mountains ; they enjoy generally 
a healthy and moderate climate, and, with some exceptions, might be 
considered as quite favourable for the activity of man. Tiie mouths 
of the Kuban, Terek, and Ural, as also the loAver course of the Araoor, 
the Usuri, and the Sungatch, are malarial, and there are also in Orenburg 
some tracts north of Ui river and Pressnogorki that are considered 

At the beginning the Cossack lands were mostly considered as 
collective property ; they are now allotted to families, save for some 
reserves. The land granted to Cossacks is considered as equivalent for 
the sacrifices they submit to in order to wear arms in the service of 
Fatherland; the allotment of each male Cossack is from 8 to 32*4 acres. 
The pensions to officers are also granted in form of land. In 1775 on 


those officers were conferred the rights of nobility and of the jjossession of 
serfs. Since the emancipation (1856) Cossack officers have been granted 
an allotment, according to rank, of from 247 to 4200 acres. It is now 
permitted to all non-Cossacks to settle in the Cossacks land, and conse- 
quently the proportion of civil population on those lands is increasing. 
In the absence of the Cossack owner his land is leased or administered 
by the community. 

We shall give a very succinct account of all the Cossack regions : — 
The Don Region. — Area, 63,532 square miles — that is more than the 
total of England and Wales; domiciled population, 2,575,878 (1897); 
density of 71 per square mile. The chief town is Novotcherkask. The 
region is divided into otdjehj or districts, and has 117 stanitsa (villages) 
and 1918 hamlets. It belongs to the southern steppes of Eussia, and 
extends from the upper Vorona affluent of the Don on the frontiers of 
the Voronej, Tambov, and Saratov governments, on the north, to the Sea 
of Azov and the mouth of the Eisk on the border of Kuban Cossacks 
land in the south. This great region may be divided into two principal 
parts, that of the north above the confluence of the Don and Medvieditsa, 
which is mainly agricultural, and that of the lower basin of Don, where 
are cultivated vines and fruits. In the Russian saying it is reputed 
to be a land of plenty, of milk and honey. The Don (anc. Janais) is 
reverenced by the Cossacks as the great benefactor, and is chanted in 
popular songs — 

" Ho, you father, famous, quiet Don ! 
Our Nourisher, Don Ivanowitcb, 
You enjoy a splendid fame, 
A splendid fame and a good parole." 

It is a mighty river 1150 miles long, having its source in a small lake 
in the government of Tula, and falling into the Sea of Azov by three 
mouths, one of which is navigable. It receives eighty affluents, of which 
the principal are the Sosna and the Donetz on the right, and the 
Khoper, the Medvieditsa, the Sal, and the Manitch on the left. Its 
course is obstructed by frequent sandbanks at low water, but in high 
spring water, when it overflows its banks, it is navigable as high as 
Zadonsk, 600 miles from its mouth. 

The region on the left shore of the Don forms mainly a low, uniform, 
saltish, infertile plain, constituting a prolongation of the Aralo-Caspian 
steppes. Its monotony is occasionally interrupted hj tumuli (kurgan) 33 
to 50 feet high, considered as Huns' and Scythians' graves. On the right 
bank of the Don the region is traversed by the small chain of the hills 
of Donetz (about 500 feet high). Along the Don, the Khoper, and the 
Medvieditsa there are many lakes and marshes, swarming with small fish. 

The districts of Donetz, Tcherkask, and Miuz are Carboniferous ; the 
northern part of the country is Cretaceous ; the south-west consists of 
Miocene beds. The Carboniferous rocks contain sandstones, argillaceous 
slates, millstone, and are rich coal-measures. The Cossack population 
is about 1,064,000, the proportion of men to women as 96 to 100, 

Kuhanland, twice as large as Switzerland (36,441 square miles), 
consists of two unequal and dissimilar parts, the one on the north 


of the Kuban (ancient Tchernomorie), a low plain slightly descending 
fi'om the heights of Stavropol towards Azov, traversed by numerous rivers 
running into the Sea of Azov, and the main chain of the Caucasus, and 
strewn with kanians, covering the graves of its ancient inhabitants ; 
the other on the south of the Kuban, hilly and mountainous, rapidly in- 
creasing in altitude from the Taman peninsula eastwards to Mount 
Elburz ; on its southern limit stretches the Black Mountain, above 
GOOO feet, which slopes gradually northwards and very abruptly south- 
wards. It is traversed by many rivers (Laba, Bjelaia, Seleutchuk) and 

The low part of the Kuban province has a generally fertile soil, but 
it is marshy, partly covered with jungle, and consequently unhealthy ; it 
is poor in wood. There are many salt lakes. 

Up to 1868 the Cossacks were recognised as the sole proprietors 
of these vast lands, granted at first (1792) to those of the former 
Zaporog Cossacks who had submitted to Russia and declared them- 
selves willing to marry. Since that date, however, this exclusive 
ownership) of Cossacks has been abolished, and the land left open to 
private purchasers. 

The total population was estimated twenty-six years ago at 519,011 
Cossacks, 149,749 non-Cossacks. The first have increased since by about 
30 per cent, and are estimated now at 675,000. The proportion of men to 
women is as 100 to 97. The non-Cossack population is very mixed and 
steadily increasing (Russian, Tcherkess, Abkhasian, German, etc.). 

The Region of the Tcnk Cossacks has an area almost as great as tliat of 
Bavaria (26,822 square miles), and consists of three principal parts — the 
eastern one, stretching along the left bank of the Malka and the Terek, 
down to its estuaries; it is marshy and flat, and subject to inundations; 
the middle one, along the Sunzha, is hilly, but also subject to inunda- 
tions ; the western, from Vladicavkas to the mouth of the Malka, along 
the left bank of the Terek, is mountainous. On the east there are 
sand)' deserts or steppes, which go on extending. The mountain parts, 
in the upper region of the Sunzha, the Atta and the Kembileivka, all 
Terek's tributaries, are woody, difficult to cultivate, and have a rough 
and humid climate. There is, however, much fertile land on the banks 
of the Terek, and there are met excellent fruit-trees, vines, pastures and 
forests. In regard to this river, as also the Kuban, many particulars 
have been given in this Magazine for June 1899. 

The portion of land belonging to the Cossacks constitutes about 32 
per cent, of the whole area ; the rest of it belongs to the non-Cossack 
population. About 14'5 per cent, of the land is considered as unfit for 
culture; 14'7 is under forests and orchards. The rest are arable and 
grazing lands. There are 4,750,000 acres of communal property, 316,000 
acres belonging to officers, and almost as much is in the army reserves : 
mean lot for every Cossack, 58 acres. 

The total population is given at 933,485, of whom about 200,000 
are Cossacks. The chief town is Grosny. 

Thr Astraclian or Volga Cossack lands, on both sides of the lower 
Volga, cover an area twice as large as that of Switzerland. The origin 


of this Cossack colony is not exactly known, but it is mentioned in 
history as far back as 1581, when the voeivodes of Astrac])an, Lizki and 
Pushkin, were ordered to start against the Shanihal of Tarki (Daghestan) 
with 1000 Volga and 500 Yaik Cossacks. This land is fertile on the 
borders of the Saratov and Samara provinces; between Tchernoi Jar and 
Yenotaevsk (beneath Zaritzin) it forms an argillaceous, flat, elevated 
plateau ; further down there are pastures on the right bank of the Volga, 
whereas on its left bank (Inner Kirghiz Horde) sand prevails. 

The Volga nourishes the Cossack, and constitutes for him an excellent 

The total Cossack population is estimated at 30,000 : the proportion 
of men to women as 95 to 100. 

Ural or Yaik Cossack land (27,221 square miles) is included within 
the governorship of Orenburg and stretches along the right bank of the 
Ural. The steppes beyond the Volga approach the Ural and possess a 
mountainous character, consisting of a long succession of grey or whitish- 
grey ridges, variegated with brown streaks and whitish-red spots of naked 
land. Usually mournful and sunburned, these steppes become highly 
animated in the spi'ing, when they are covered with rich many-coloured 
pastures on which the Ural Cossacks, in incessant conflict with their 
enemies, the Kirghiz, graze their flocks and herds of sheep and horses. 
The area belonging to the Cossacks is almost as large as Bavaria, and 
their chief settlement is Uralsk. It was at first occupied by adventurous 
Don Cossacks, who fled hither after their defeat by Murashkin (1577), 
and destroyed the Tartar city of Saraitchek. 

The Cossack land extends on the gentle southern slopes of the 
Obschy-Syrt, a range of detached hills, some of which, at the sources of 
the Derkul, a right affluent of the Ural, have an altitude of 600 feet, 
declining gradually to 70 feet. The land is most fertile, well wooded, 
and well irrigated. The small rivers draining the mountain range 
periodically overflow the deepest hollows and create a magnificent graz- 
ing ground. From Uralsk downwards the surface is flat, gradually 
sinking until at Kalmykovo it descends almost to the sea-level and 
passes into the sandy desert. The Ural delta overflows in high waters, 
and is permanently covered with jungle and bush, making a good pro- 
tection for cattle in winter. 

The land for purposes of administration is divided into three otdjely ; 
it has thirty stanitsas and 138 hamlets. 

The total Cossack population is 117,000 ; the proportion of men to 
women as 90 to 100. 

Orenhurg Cossack land is larger than Ireland, and is the northward 
prolongation of Ural Cossack land. It is traversed in different direc- 
tions by broad but not high off"shoots of the Ural mountains. Some 
parts of it, viz. the district between the Miuss and Ui (secondary tribu- 
taries of the Tobol) are almost at sea-level and are covered with numerous 
salt, briny and freshwater lakes. There are but few deserts : the soil is 
mostly fertile, and is partly covered with deciduous forests. From the 
main chain of the Ural, at the sources of the Ural and Ui rivers, there 
detaches itself a secondary watershed, attaining in some parts an alti- 


tude of 1200 feet, and remarkable for its vast and beautiful forests. 
One of these — Dsliobyk-Karagai — measures not less than 77,400 acres. 
Southwards the mountain range (Guberlinsky) descends rapidly into 
the valley of the upper Ural. The land is rich in mines. 

The total Cossack population attains 378,000; the proportion of 
men to women is as 95 to 100. 

Siberian Cossack land stretches in a long and narrow tract beyond 
the Ural, along the Presnogorky, Irtysh, Buchtarminsk, and Bisk lines, 
and, partly dispersed in the steppes of the Kirghiz Horde, covers an 
area almost as large as Bavaria. 

The Presnogorky line along the Ishim, on the south of Tobolsk down 
to the steppes of Kirghiz, is strewn with numerous salt, bitter, and fresh- 
water lakes. It is only partly fit for cultivation in its alluvial parts ; 
there are pastures and woods. Cattle and horse-breeding are hampered 
by the want of good water, and diseases arising from the sickly emana- 
tions of the stagnant waters and putrefying vegetable matters. 

The Irtysh line, in the province of Akmolinsk, covers mostly a sandy, 
woodless tract along the river, which runs from Semipalatinsk to Omsk 
(462 miles) without an affluent. On the left bank of the Irtysh there 
are, however, some excellent pastures. 

The Buchtarminsky Cossack line is situated on the northern offshoots 
of the Altai mountain range at an altitude of G80 to 900 feet. In the 
valleys of some rivers arising in these mountains there is little wood, 
but an abundance of good arable land, meadow, and pasture. 

The Bisk (Biisk) line on the upper Obi, also on the northern rami- 
fications of the Altai, at an altitude of 1000 to 2000 feet, has an 
abundance of pasture and arable land, and is besides richly covered with 

The lands of the Cossacks in the Kirghiz steppe are mostly fertile 
and favourable for grazing. 

The total Cossack population is calculated in round numbers at 

Semiri/echinsh Cossack land constitutes a part of the government of the 
stepi)es between Siberia and Turkestan, has an area of 1041 square 
miles, and is naturally divided into a mountainous part, belonging to 
the system of the Thian-shan and a flat country traversed by many 
rivers, and sprinkled with a considerable number of lakes great and 
small. The name of the i)rovince signifies icven rivers, which are the 
Karatal, and its afiluents the Kok-su, the Biien, the Akh-su with the 
Sarkan, and the Baskan, with the Lepsa. 

There are other and even more important rivers such as the Hi, 
partly navigable, which falls into Lake Balkash and covers with 
its delta an area of above 5000 square miles. Among the lakes, 
Issik-kul is thrice as large as the Lake of Geneva, and the Ala-kul, the 
Sassyk-kul, the Baskan, are also noticeable. The low region slopes 
slightly towards the NE., in which direction the rivers floAV into the 
Balkash ; it is an argillaceous sandy steppe, supposed to be formerly the 
bed of a tertiary sea, being then in communication with the. great sea 
of Central Asia (Han-hai). The Cossacks are mainly settled in the 


mountainous country of Ala-tau, at an altitude of 2000 to 2500 

There is now a very mixed population : about 51 per cent. Kirghiz, 
24 per cent, of Sartes, 6 per cent, of Euzbegs, 5 per cent, of Tadjiks, 
3 per cent, of Kuroraa, and the rest is divided between the Russians 
(whose number has steadily increased), the Kiptchak, the Tarantchis, the 
Tartars, Kalmucks, Dungans, and Persians. The number of Cossacks is 
not much above 26,000; their capital is Verny. It is a promised land 
of Eussian immigration, and quite recently the Cossacks had to concede 
130,000 dessiatine of their reserves to Russians. 

TranshaiM Cossack land is twice as large as Switzerland, occupies 
the southern and eastern part of Transbaikalia, and is divided by the 
Yablonovoi (Stanovoy) range of mountains, which converge with the 
northern buttress ranges of the Aldan high plain, into two parts — the 
eastern one with a mean altitude of above 2000 feet, and the western 
not much above 1000 feet. The first and higher part is very broken 
and woody, and is traversed by many ranges parallel to the main chain, 
and enclosing the basins of the Ingoda, Onon, Gasimur, and other rivers ; 
on its southern extremity it passes into an undulating steppe. The 
second and lower part lies in broad and elevated valleys formed by the 
Ingoda, the Selenga and its affluents, the Dshida and Tshikoi. As there 
is only one easy passage through the Stanovoy range (road to Tchita) 
comnumications here are very difficult. 

The chief town is Tchita Total Cossack population, 187,000. 

Amoor Cossack land extends in the form of an oasis along the deserts 
of the Amoor and the Ussury, as also on the banks of the lake Chanka 
on the north and east of Manchuria. This colony, which is of recent 
origin, is divided into three otdjely (districts) ; it has seventeen stanitsas, 
about 100 hamlets, and 3200 farms; its chief town is Blagovechensk 
(9300 inhabitants). At the confluence of the Zeya, the most important 
tributary of the Amoor, the Cossacks settled when detached in 1858 
from the Transbaikal Cossacks, and they were obliged to fit out and 
maintain two mounted regiments and two foot battalions. This land 
is subject to inundations, and otherwise the conditions of life must be 
rather dreary, for the government has been obliged to strengthen their 
number with military outposts. 

The total Cossack population may be estimated at 28,000. 

Ethnography. — The Cossacks sprung from an admixture of diff"erent 
races, but the identity of their calling and their mode of life and warfare 
have stamped on them all a common Russian cachet. The great 
majority of Cossacks are Great Russians, they are settled mainly on 
the Don ; Little Russians now preponderate in the Kuban and Terek 
Cossacks army ; there are also to be found on the Don, in the Orenburg, 
Semiryechinsk, Siberian and Transbaikal Cossack colonies. Tartars are 
numerous among the Don, Ural, Orenburg, Siberian, and Semiryechinsk 
Cossacks ; they are also to be found among the first three Cossacks' colonies 
a not inconsiderable number of Kalmucks. lu the Transbaikal Cossack 
army were incorporated a number of Buriat and Tungus, and among the 
Caucasian Cossacks there are now some Caucasian Highlanders, Lesghins, 


Tclierkess, Tchetchen, and others ; finally, in the Orenburg Cossack 
army there are Bashkir, Mordvin, and Tchuvashes. There are few Jews, 
about 0"5 per cent. 

Cossacks are generally a beautiful race of men, and there are ever 
to be found on the Don, and especially on the Terek and Kuban, 
splendid specimens of men and women. They are almost all excellent 
horsemen, robust, enduring, weather-beaten, soldierlike, hardened, adroit, 
everything that the bearing of arms, the life in the open air on horse- 
back can make them. Each Cossack army has, however, some special 

The Caucasian Cossacks, and especially those of Terek, have much 
intermingled with Caucasian mountaineers — Tchetchen, Tcherkess, and 
also Nogai and others ; they have borrowed of them many of their 
peculiarities and have improved in bodily structure. The Terek Cossacks 
are a beautiful tribe. Their women are particularly remarkable, and are 
reputed to be in many ways superior to their masters, as more forward 
and even more intelligent. They combine the classical, regular features 
of Tchetchen women with the powerful constitution of the women of 
the Russian northern type. 

The Cossacks speak Russian, but have many words of their own, 
and they give their own significance to some Russian words. 

The Cossack as loarrior. — The Cossack is a born freebooter, he has all 
the qualities of a militia horseman and is quite efficiently adapted for 
outpost service. Cossacks are excellent for foraging parties, surprising 
the enemy, cutting off his communications, pursuing him when defeated. 
Only fifty years ago Cossackdom constituted a military caste which 
it was forbidden to leave. Among the Caucasian Cossacks even a female 
member of a Cossack family could marry out of the caste only by special 

In 1856 was begun the reform, realised ten years later, according 
to which Cossackdom ceased to be a caste, its military affairs were 
separated from its civil business, and its administration from justice. 
The law of 1874 thoroughly remodelled the whole military organisation 
of Cossacks ; they are now incorporated in the field troops. The 
military organisation of Cossacks thus underwent considerable change 
with the strengthening of the central power of the State. Very loose 
at first, with considerable freedom in the choice of the chiefs, mode 
of operations and generalship, it became more stringent and more 
appropriate not only to military requirements but also to the increased 
civil and peaceful interests of the country. 

Before 1835 there were no fixed rules for the military obligations 
of Cossacks; each individual served as long as he Avas capable. In that 
year it was decreed, at first for the Don Cossacks and later for the 
others, that each capable Cossack of nineteen years of age is liable to serve 
for thirty years, and that all male children of Cossacks, on the attain- 
ment of seventeen years of age, are to be enrolled as minors for two years 
in the recruiting schools. The reforms of Alexander ii. have consider- 
ably lightened the service of Cossacks, they have introduced stricter 
qualifications for recruits, increased the number of the dispensed, and 


thus caused a greater inequality among Cossacks, many of whom can 
pursue different peaceful, lucrative callings. 

Cossacks are now called at nineteen years to draw lots, save pupils 
of high schools and professionals. According to custom, at the entrance 
into active service the recruits simultaneously admitted exchange 
between themselves various gifts. Cossacks when set free constitute 
a class of men who maintain their right on the land, but have to pay 
during twenty-two years a special tax of 1 5 roubles a year. 

Cossacks, treated by Napoleon I. as miserabile cavaUeria, have proved 
themselves to be an excellent instrument of conquest over the multitude 
of mostly semi-barbarous people Russia has encountered in her ex- 
pansion ; they have been called to fight, and have developed in quite 
an extraordinary degree watchfulness, vigilance, readiness for an un- 
guarded attack, endurance — in fact all the qualities necessary for the 
struggle in the van of an army. 

From his tenderest years a Cossack learns to ride, and with maturity 
he becomes an accomplished horseman, capable of performing on his 
enduring and well-trained horse the tricks one admires only in the 
circus. His horse is a true companion, as capable as himself of lying in 
wait for hours without betraying his presence. 

Besides Cossack cavalry (a force of 268 squadrons [hundreds] in 
time of peace and 868 squadrons on war-footing) there are also some 
companies of Cossack infantry or pladune (to lie prostrate), so called 
because their special task is to search for traces of their enemies in bush 
or otherwise covered places, and to lie in wait. A. plastunc is expected to 
be not only a good shot, but also a good pedestrian, enduring and 
patient in the highest degree. The plastunes acquired great renown in 
the wars with Tcherkess on the Kuban. 

All Cossacks are warlike and proud, faithful in their service and 
true to their Tzar. All the traditions, aspirations, songs, and deeds 
of the Cossack's life, for centuries, have centred mainly in warlike 
prowess ; war has ever been considered by them as a glorious undertaking, 
opening a large field for audacious daring and all manly virtues. 

In their dealings with their enemies, or whom they are bidden to 
consider as such, they are not only coarse, cruel, violent, but even 
ferocious, and it would be easy to fill volumes with instances of their 
atrocities. In a Russian popular pamphlet about Cossacks (Alexandrov, 
Moscow, 1899) one finds narratives of how the Ural Cossacks knocked 
down the Kirghiz so unmercifully, that even the Ural groaned as with 
pain, how they pursued them like wild goats, how a famous Cossack — 
Vasily Struniashof — descended the Ural on a small craft with two guns, 
trying to approach unperceived the Kirghiz camp and kill with a single 
shot two of them. When in pursuit of a retreating foe they utter singular 
savage cries, and woe to the unfortunate falling in their hands. The 
wars with Napoleon, and especially the Caucasian wars, have left as inex- 
haustible chronicles of human cruelties as of heroic deeds. 

The Cossacks form about 6 per cent, of the regular Russian army ; 
the proportion is 7 per cent, for West Siberia and 22 per cent, for 


In relation to different arras the proportion is 1 per cent, for the 
infantry, 7 7 per cent, for the cavalry, and 50 per cent, for the artillery. 

We do not know exactly the total Cossack force, but we may evaluate 
it approximately at 130,000 in time of peace and four times this number 
in time of war. The Cossack has to serve twenty years, of which three 
years are for training, twelve at the frontier, and five in reserve. The 
twelve years' service is divided into three callings, four years each. One 
third of the male Cossack population fit to bear arms, constitute the 
regiments of the first calling (49i regiments). Actually the Cossack 
has only three years' service. The highest authority is vested in the 
superior administration of the Cossack armies. Don and Siberia 
Cossacks have their Atamans, nominated by the Crown, with the rights 
of Governor-General ; the other Cossacks, vo'isho, are placed under the 
control of the General-Governors of the parts of the empire to which 
they belong. The supreme Ataman of the Don Cossacks is the heir- 

Uniform and Arms. — The Caucasian Cossacks have borrowed their 
beautiful uniform from the Caucasian Highlanders (Tcherkess); a 
close-fitting, woollen or silken, short heskmei, a red or blue shirt with 
a collar and an upper dark green coat — khcrlesslcn, with a cartridge box 
on both sides of the breast, a papaclici (shaggy sheepskin cap) on the 
head, and viatchiki (soleless morocco boots), for the feet, as well as j^orshni 
of raw skin requiring to be wetted before being drawn on. For protec- 
tion in cold weather, and for a covering a Caucasian Cossack has his 
bitreca — a large, shaggy, foldless mantle, and his hashh/J: or bonnet. 
Armed and dressed as a Tcherkess, the Caucasian Cossack is scarcely 
distinguishable from him. Other Cossacks wear dark green or blue 
tunics with epaulets, partlets, and collar edgings of different colours, 
broadly striped pantaloons of the colour of the coat, and a cap with a 
coloured band, a visor, and a cockade. 

Most Cossacks are armed with a Berdan-gun, a shashJca (a crooked 
sabre), and the famous whip. Caucasian Cossacks have daggers, and the 
first file of most squadrons bear lances. 

The Cossack must provide himself with his arms and his equipment, 
as also his horse at his OAvn cost; he wants for that from 150 to 300 
roubles ; he must keep all that in order ; in case of his being incapable 
of providing himself with all necessary for the service he is helped out 
of communal resources. 

A Cossack bears all his arms separately so as not to allow any clank- 
ing ; he takes good care of them ; and though his dress may be ragged, 
his arms are always in good order. 

The Cossack as Policeman. — The internal troubles of Russia have recently 
caused the Government of the Czar to employ Cossacks as a police force, 
and many landlords also menaced by agrarian disorders recur to them 
for the protection of their goods. The intervention of Cossacks in the 
maintenance of civil order has a brutal and often a sanguinary result; 
they do not proceed with much nicety and discretion, and use freely their 
dreadful nagaiJca, and even their firearms. Called to bring a tumultuous 
crowd to reason, they do not endeavour to disperse it, but they pack it 


together and then trample upon it, playing furiously with their whips and 
shashka. They do often exercise violence upon the population, violate 
property, outrage women, and provoke most bitter complaints from 
the civil population. All Cossacks do not, however, approve of their 
employment as a police force, and in the midst of their female popula- 
tion, their wives and their sisters, there seems to reign some discontent 
at such pitiless proceedings against the revolutionary elements of the 
Russian people, their Christian, though slightly inferior brethren, called 
a little disdainfully the catsap. There are even some recorded instances 
when the Cossacks refused to be employed for police duties. 

The Cossacks, in fact, are in no way ideal policemen ; they are rather 
too brutal for these delicate functions, and besides, they enjoy among 
the Russian people the not wholly unmerited reputation of being very 
clever and audacious thieves — which is not a useful quality in policemen. 
The Cossack as Citizen — Customs and 3fa7iners.— The Cossack is not 
only a warrior and a policeman, but he is also a peaceful and industrious 
citizen, who has his lands to till, his garden to cultivate, his cattle and 
horses to raise ; his fishing, hunting, and a number of trades and 
occupations to look after. Compared with ordinary Russian peasant 
and tradesman, the Cossack may be considered as a privileged being; he 
is more cultured, and he has a prouder and more dignified bearing than 
the Russian peasant. Cossacks have to give to the state a difficult and 
perilous service, but on the whole they enjoy a life superior to that of 
the rest of Russia. Their allotments are superior to those of Russian 
peasants, they are mostly settled along great rivers abounding in fish, 
they pay no taxes, they are little interfered with in their industries 
and daily work. 

The Cossacks are in consequence and on the whole more con- 
servative and more satisfied with their lot than the rest of the Russians. 
There has certainly been manifested some dissatisfaction in the ranks 
of the Cossacks, and there are some elements among them who would 
like to reform Cossackdom in a radical way, but the great majority 
remain profoundly conservative. They respect their elders, maintain 
their faith, and their old customs. 

To understand the Cossacks it is necessary to remember that they are 
mostly the descendants of those terrible fanatics of liberty and orthodoxy, 
the Zaporog Cossacks, who in their appeal to new recruits said, " We 
urge to join us all Avho are ready to be impaled, to be racked, quartered, 
to suffer all tortures for the Christian faith." 

The Cossack observes severely all the fasts in this sense, that on 
those days he does not eat either flesh, nor any other animal food, 
except fish, and that his meals are prepared with vegetable oil. He 
goes to church on holy days, and he likes to put one or even a whole 
bunch of wax tapers, before the ikon (holy image) ; he does not eat 
before the mass, and on Sunday evenings he likes to read the Scriptures 
and the history of the saints. There are a considerable number of 
starover or old believers among the Cossacks (about 10 per cent.), and 
about 4 per cent, of non-Christian creeds. 

On the Don and the Ural the wooden or stone houses of the Cossacks 


look far more comfortable and are more spacious than the ordinary- 
peasant Russian isba. A Cossack's house consists usually of two neat 
and bright rooms, provided with a large Russian stove, adorned with 
numerous ikons and the portraits of the reigning family, and furnished 
with beds, benches, tables, and sideboards. There are feather beds, 
carpets, cushions, bedclothes ; and along the walls, arms and copper 

The Cossack eats and drinks abundantly and well, he crosses himself 
before and after meals, as he crosses himself also when yawning and on 
many other occasions. At dinner on week-days he has bread, cakes, 
curdled milk, cabbage or fish soup, and mutton. On Sundays he has 
in addition, fish, salt beef, fowls, and even sometimes venison ; on fast- 
days he eats freely of cucumbers, water-melons, pumpkins or gourds, 
dried sturgeon, caviare, herring, potatoes, fruits, etc. He does not eat 
without drinking, but washes down his food with bumpers of ichihir, 
taken always at one draught, even by the ladies. The Cossack's capacity 
for drinking is great, for he can take at once a whole tchapura ! a wooden 
chalice containing eight glasses. In their leisure hours the Cossack's 
youth, and especially the women, gnaw continually grains of turnsole. 

Cossacks are strong and adroit, but they willingly leave to their 
strong and patient women not only house but also field and other work. 
They indulge in warlike sports — shooting, wild galloping, lance-throwing, 
and they like also to chant songs of their famous heroes of old — Yermak, 
Razin, Bulavin, Nekrassof, MinaefF, Krasnoschekof, Platov, Ilovaisky, 
and others. 

A Cossack will endure any climate ; he has admirable instinct, which 
permits him to find his way in the wildest tract. His j)assions are 
easily aroused, and there are many stories of sanguinary conHict between 
rivals, and even between father and son, the Cossack marrying young 
and leaving his wife, on account of his service, for a long time alone. 

There are a number of educated men among Cossacks, but ordinary 
Cossacks are generally very ignorant and highly superstitious ; they 
seem to remain in some respects very children of nature, noisily demon- 
strating their joy in success, but also easily dispirited in adversity. The 
Cossack believes in devils, sorcery, spells, etc. With all this they are 
cunning and patient in stratagems. They are very hospitable. Every one 
is happy to have friends (kunaJ:), and to keep faithful to his friends. The 
Cossacks do not generally exercise any marked influence on the aborigines 
they are brought into contact with ; on the contrary, they easily adopt 
local customs. They are pious; on every occasion they invoke the name 
of God, and perhaps as often that of the devil. At the beginning of 
his meals, in drinking one's health, at any supposed danger, and even 
at the moment when, pointing at his enemy, he pulls the trigger of 
his musket, the Cossack says " In the name of the Father and the Son." 

The manners of Cossacks are what their warlike habits, the use of 
arras, long absence from home, and severe duties have made them. To 
be a good fellow among them signifies to be faithful in friendship and 
hatred, a strong drunkard, an adroit robber of horses and cattle, a singer, 
and a player on the balalaika, a good sportsman, a hoaxer, a favourite 


with women, and before all a djighif, a dauntless horseman prepared to 
kill and to be killed. 

Cossack ivomen are highly praised, and considered by many as 
superior to their men in intelligence and industry. They do not 
enjoy, however, from their men the consideration due to their value 
and are even often treated harshly. Heavy work in the house, or 
courtyard, and the field is left to them ; to them is principally due all 
the welfare and comfort the Cossack enjoys. The habit of heavy 
masculine work and industry have developed in the women intelli- 
gence and muscular strength, and also a considerable amount of 
authority in the family life. The Cossack's house and all his goods 
are acquired and maintained, thanks to the labour and the care of his 
women. Affecting for them before a stranger a kind of scorn, the rude 
Cossacks cannot, however, but recognise their skill, powerful good sense, 
and firmness of character. 

Cossack industries. — Cossacks possess rich lands, beautiful rivers with 
plenty of fish, herds of cattle and horses; they are agriculturists, gardeners, 
fishermen, tradesmen, and men of commerce, they pursue many kinds 
of industries, but with all that, they do not constitute a self-suflScient 
state or community taking the ordinary chances in the universal struggle 
for life. They are a privileged community, or rather a number of 
communities, provided with many good things of this world somewhat 
at the expense of the state of which they are members. They are 
insured to a certain degree against the perils accompanying the free 
struggle for existence, and probably in consequence of that, as also of 
the obligations imposed on them and of their backward state of culture, 
their industries are not progressive. 

Agriculture. — In the early days of Cossackdom, among Zaporog 
and Don Cossacks tillage was despised and even interdicted, it being 
the occupation of the peasants residing among them, but now agriculture 
has become the most important industry of Cossacks. 

Apart from the considerable extent of land belonging to the always 
increasing class of civilians, peasants, artisans, craftsmen, etc., which since 
1867 have obtained the right to buy land and become proprietors in the 
formerly exclusive Cossacks domain, the tillable land in their possession, 
which has been estimated in the seven principal Cossacks regions at 
about 90 million acres, falls into three categories : communal lauds, about 
66 per cent, of the whole, reserve lands 22 per cent., and the lands 
belonging to officers 12 per cent. These numbers are, however, only 
provisional. The communal lands are in the possession of villages 
or stanitsas, they are divided among the male members of the commune 
at their attainment of seventeen years of age, on the basis of an 
allotment which varies in diff"erent Cossack regions, according to the 
quality of the soil, from 20 to 216 acres, the mean being 12 dessiatine 
(32-7 acres). 

The reserve land is considered as belonging to an entire voisko, and 
in a given Cossacks region it is administered by local authorities under 
the upper control of the War Ministry. It is a state fund destined to 
subsidise the Cossacks in case of particular want, to help in furnishing 


armaments, etc. The proceeds of the land go to supply the funds in 
l^ossession of each voishn. 

According to an estimate made twenty-five years ago, the total funds 
in cash at the disposal of the Cossacks were eighteen and a half million 
roubles, or about seventeen roubles per head for the male population. 
We have no more recent data. 

Prosperity is greatest among the Ural Cossacks ; the Don, Kuban, 
Orenburg, and Siberian are also well off, whereas the Transbaikal and 
Amoor Cossacks suffer from the great distances of any centre of civili- 
sation and of markets; Terek, Astrachan and Semireychinsk Cossacks 
seem to be the poorest. The usual cereal crops are wheat, rye, barley, 
oats, buckwheat, millet, and potatoes. 

All Cossack lands, save the Transbaikal and Astrachan regions, 
produce cereals in quantities sufficient for the needs of the population, 
while the Don and Semireyechinsk region has a surplus. Apart from 
the arable land, the Cossacks cultivate orchards and gardens, they raise 
cabbages, cucumbers, melons, apple, cherry, and plum trees, and they 
have some special crops such as flax, hemp and tobacco. The Don Terek 
Cossacks have a considerable acreage under vines, and all have vast 
stretches of meadow and pasture land. 

The agricultural methods of Cossacks are of a primitive description, 
their plough is heavy and unmanageable, and they do not generally 
introduce new agricultural machines, preferring to make their patient 
and strong women do the work. 

The Cossacks are also apiculturists ; in the Kuban, Don, Terek and 
Siberian Cossack regions they produce honey and wax to the value of 
about half a million roubles. Next to agriculture, the most important 
industry of Cossacks is cattle and horse breeding. 

Their live stock was valued some time ago per hundred heads of 
Cossack male and female population for all the ten Cossack regions as 
follow : — 

Horses, GO (Ural 140, Transbaikal 124, Don 35). 

Cattle, 94 (Don 136, Ural 134, Kuban 126). 

Sheep, 161 (Ural 503, Kuban 290, Transbaikal and Don, 276). 

In the Kuban and Orenburg regions there are besides about 300 pigs 
per 100 Cossacks. 

The Cossack horse is a cross-breed between Russian, Kalmuck, 
Kirghiz, and Bashkir horses, and has excellent qualities. It is rather small 
(except Black Sea Cossack horses), but well built, extraordinarily endur- 
ing even under bad nurture ; being left much at liberty in the steppes, it 
has acquired much prudence and very acute senses. The "Black Sea" 
horse, from the Dnieper, has a short neck, is strong, enduring, and 
sturdy. The Caucasian Cossacks have excellent horses of mixed Arab 
and Karabagh blood ; there are also Nogai and Kabardine horses, 
admirable mountain climbers. 

The Russian Government favours horse-breeding, and has estab- 
lished studs on the Don and the Caucasus, and has assigned for this 
purpose in the Don Cossack region an area of above two million 


The cattle of the Don Cossacks are renowned for their size and 
excellent qualities. The sheep (Moldovan race) have long but hard 
wool. The poor animals are badly cared for and often perish from the 
inclemency of the weather. In all the Cossack lands where there is also 
some percentage of non-Cossack population, the number of live-stock 
belonging to the first is far superior to that belonging to the last (in the 
ratio of 82 to 16). 

Fisheries. — Cossacks are good fishers, and as almost all their posses- 
sions extend along the great rivers, abounding in fish, or are on the 
shores of the Caspian, Black, and Azov seas, or on the great lake of 
Baikal, fisheries constitute a considerable item in their prosperity. The 
streams of water traversing the lands of Cossacks, as also the parts of the 
seas adjoining these lands, are the undivided property of the respective 
Cossack voisko. Fishing is permitted to all Cossacks, with only such 
restrictions as are considered necessary to secure undisturbed spawning. 
Besides the great fisheries belonging to the headquarters of a voisko, 
some of which lie even outside Cossack land, and which are leased, 
there are also fisheries in the lakes and rivers inside the limits of a 
stanitsa and belonging to all its members. 

The richest fisheries are on the Don and the Ural; after them come 
those of the Kuban and Azov Sea, as also those on the Caspian and 
Volga. In these waters are caught some kinds of sturgeon (white and 
stellated), silure, sandre, bream, cyprinus viviba, carp, herring, and dab. 
On the Ural they distinguish " red " and " white " fish : " red " fish is 
more valuable but scarce (Acipenser sturio, A. ruthenus) ; it is reserved for 
export ; the " white," by far the more abundant, is consumed by the 
Cossacks on their numerous fast-days. From the " red " fish is obtained 
caviare, viosiga (dried back tendons), and isinglass. In the cold season 
the fish is served fresh, in hot season salted or dried. 

The products of the fisheries are not unimportant, and, according to 
some statistics, may be valued at about four to five million roubles a year, 
more than half of which belongs to the Ural region, where they are the 
main source of income. The river Ural is recognised as the undivided 
property of the Ural voisko, and the fishing is permitted to all Cossacks 
on the condition of observing certain established, pretty complicated rules. 
The Ural Cossacks enjoy also the right of fishing on the Tcholkar lake 
and its tributary, the Ankotys. 

In the Astrachan voisko all waters are leased for fishing, the adminis- 
tration reserving to themselves only some rights regarding train-oil and 
the salting. 

The fisheries on the Don yield about 1000 tons per annum. 

Mining Industries. — In the Cossack lands coal, naphtha, pig-iron, and 
salt are obtained. The exploitation of these is left free of taxes. 

The coal on the Donetz began to be extracted in 1842; since then 
the exploitation has steadily progressed, and the output rose from 
1,624,720 tons in 1884 to 7,413,000 tons in 1898. 

The naphtha wells are worked in the land of the Terek and Kuban 
Cossacks; they are leased. The Grosny oil-fields yielded, in 1899, 
406,000 tons of crude oil. 



Pig-iron is obtained on the Don — 1,333,258 tons in 1899; it is 
partly exported. 

There are many salt lakes in Cossack land : on the Don the lake of 
Manytch ; in Kuban five groups of salt lakes, on the shores of Azov, 
Bugas, Petrovsk, Akhtarsk, Achuev, Yassan — forty lakes in all ; on the 
Ural ten salt-lakes. 

Cossacks obtain their salt for consumption by means of taxes levied 
by their own administration ; where there are no salt-works, they get it 
from the state — 77 lbs. per head yearly. 

There are some other industries, such as the exploitation of the 
forests, and hunting. A Cossack may be also a tanner, a potter, a 
tradesman, an artisan of various kinds, a craftsman, but there is no par- 
ticular Cossack industry, and in all kinds of industries the Cossacks are 
rather back\yard; their principal preoccupation of being ready for war 
prevents them from engaging in peaceful pursuits. Most Cossacks are 
excellent sportsmen, the hunting of wild boar, deer, and hares being a 
favourite pastime with them. 

Independently of their military tastes and pursuits, the industrial 
activity of Cossacks is hampered by their dependence upon their autho- 
rities even in private and industrial concerns. 

Manufactures. — The Cossacks have neither time nor knowledge nor 
disposition to employ themselves in manufactories ; they leave it to the 
non-Cossack portion of their population, called outlanders, which is 
steadily increasing. There are counted some 1500, mostly small, manu- 
factories, in Cossack land, viz. the oil industry, tanyards, brick-making, 
potteries, candle-making, etc., producing a sum of about 10 to 12 million 
roubles yearly. It is a very poor result indeed, when compared with 
the industrial activities of many free countries, such as Switzerland, for 
instance, whose population is only equal to that of the Cossacks, whose 
territory is only one-fourteenth part of that occupied by Cossacks, and 
which exports manufactured goods to the value of 900 millions — that is 
thirty-six times as much as the Cossacks. 

Commerce. — The Cossacks are not merchants, and commerce as a 
peaceful occupation, requiring for its success peace, order, and equity, 
is incompatible with their martial, restless spirit. Some Cossacks regard 
commerce with sheer contempt ; they prefer to take rather than to buy. 
For long the commerce in Cossack land was carried on exclusively by 
the non-Cossack portion of the population, but the Cossack at least per- 
ceived the inconvenience of being always cheated by outlanders, and 
they demanded to be permitted to carry on commerce for themselves. In 
1835, on the Don, and later in other parts of Cossack land, there was 
instituted a commercial class among the Cossacks, who, in return for 
a special tax levied for the benefit of the voisko, were liberated from 
military service and were granted some privileges. 

Later on all merchants in Russia had to pay for their patents, and 
the loss sustained to the Cossack treasury from the suspension of the 
special tax on Cossack merchants was made good by the state. But the 
number of the last was very inconsiderable (about 4500), and the trade 
now, as before, is mainly carried on by the non-Cossacks. 


The exports consist of raw and half-manufactured goods, imports of 
manufactured goods, and especially textiles, of a total value which has 
been estimated at iJ^ million roubles in 1878, and, considering its 
annual increase of about one per cent., it cannot be now much above 
64 million roubles. 

Cosscu'k Finance. — Cossackdom is a kind of state in the state which 
levies taxes, owns vast extents of land, waters, mines, and forests, and 
has its proper grant from the administration, and so on. The total 
revenue of all the ten Cossacks lands was given twenty-six years ago as 
equal to 6,396,801 roubles; the expenditure left a balance of 93,000 
roubles. We regret not being able to give the actual figures for the 
present time, but having regard to the slight progress in agriculture and 
industry made by the Cossacks, we do not suppose the total to be much 
above 10 million roubles. The richest communal properties are in the 
Don, Kuban, and Ural Cossacks voisko; the poorest on Terek, Semir- 
yechinsk, and Transbaikal. The expenditure on public schools varies 
from 10 to 40 per cent, of the budget. There is as yet not a single 
high school in the Cossack lands. 

Conclusion. — Russia is on the eve of radical reforms ; it is highly 
probable that, with the emancipation of the great masses from the civil 
inequalities and their participation in the councils of the great Empire, 
the external policy of Russia will be more settled, and its limits will not 
be further extended, and the question naturally arises, What will become 
of the Cossacks 1 Are they to enjoy indefinitely their present privileged 
position, or are they to become like the other subjects of Russia ? 

The Cossacks have played a great historical part in the increase of 
Russian power and dominion ; they continue to retain considerable 
military importance, but does not their maintenance as a privileged and 
military caste constitute some danger to the peaceful development of 
Russia 1 

It is remarkable that among the Cossacks themselves there exists 
some, if not widespread, discontent. Some Cossack deputies in the last 
Duma made themselves interpreters of the complaints of Cossacks. It 
seems that the land and the privileges they possess do not always constitute 
for them a sufficient equivalent for their obligations to serve as the militia 
of Russia. Some of them believe that they have reasons to complain of 
a serious economic crisis, provoked by an unusually prolonged retention 
of their men under arms ; others affirm that they have been outraged in 
their best traditions by being employed for the suppression of the aspira- 
tions for freedom they themselves have always cherished. The dis- 
content may as yet be only quite partial, though there have been already 
some revolts to suppress in which the military authorities have had 
recourse to regular troops ; but there are not the Cossacks' interests alone 
to be considered. 

What is the advantage to the Russian state in the further main- 
tenance of the privileged status of the Cossacks'? There is certainly a 
financial advantage, viz. the fact that the tax on the Cossacks, like that 
on all ordinary Russian subjects, is insufficient to cover the expenses of 
the military department for the levy, the equipment, and the armament 


of tlie Cossack troops, which is now done at the cost of the Cossacks 
themseh^es. It is said, further, that the military charge falls more heavily 
on the Cossacks than on the rest of the population. In each 1000 men the 
Cossacks give yearly 17 recruits, the other population only 5 ; on actual 
service there are 62 men for each 1000 among the Cossacks, and only 
24 among the rest of the Empire ; the respective numbers in time of war 
are as 245 to 57. The mobilisation of Cossacks is also proceeding more 
quickly than that of the rest of the army. 

We are not concerned to weigh the validity of all these argu- 
ments, but certainly the maintenance of the Cossacks is not exclusively 
either a financial or a military question ; it is also an important social 
and political problem ; there are implicated important considerations of 
civil and social importance. 

There is, besides, to consider that Eussia may no longer need a 
particularly Avarlike population on its present frontiers, and that among 
this population itself dissatisfaction may increase in consequence of 
the progress of more peaceful ideas and of changed circumstances, which 
do not favour the military spirit and counsel the changing of arms for 
the plough. 

The transformation may be gradual, without disturbing the Cossacks' 
rightful possessions. The Don and Ural Cossack may become quite as 
peaceful citizens as are now numerous Little-Russian Cossacks, whose 
ancestors were the most uncompromising of true Cossacks. 

In some respects the Cossacks are better prepared than the rest of 
the population for realising the new^ course Eussia is about to enter 
upon ; they have already enjoyed a certain autonomy, freedom, and 
electoral rights. Their rich lands may become the granaries of Eussia. 

It is certain that the Cossacks are in narrow straits just now, when 
the whole of Eussia is in the midst of an alarming crisis. The war with 
Japan had already necessitated extraordinary efforts, and now, indepen- 
dently of the forty-nine and a half regiments of the first calling, there 
are mobilised eight regiments from Orenburg, three regiments from the 
Ural, and one regiment from other Cossacks, except Caucasians, as if it 
were a time of war. Thanks to these enforced duties, lasting three 
years, many Cossack families, writes Step, organ of the Orenburg 
Cossacks, are ruined, their fields remain untilled, their houses unrepaired, 
and they have no cattle. It is true the Government has set apart seven 
million roubles for their assistance, but this is far from being sufficient. 
These and similar complaints from Cossackland, though partly explicable 
by the particular conditions of the time, do not prove the excellency 
of the system, and may be considered as favouring a radical change of 
a state of privilege into that of equality before the law, of an exclusively 
martial spirit into a more balanced use of all the human faculties. 

Viewing the general progress of the world and the increased 
peaceful competition of all human races, it is time for the Cossacks 
to apply their great energies to other than military prowess, to take 
to schools, science, art, industry and commerce, and to make a better 
use of the immense natural resources offered them by their vast and 
beautiful lands and splendid waters. 




At a Meeting of Council held on the 27th March, the undermentioned 
lady and gentlemen were elected Members of the Society : — 

Dr. A. Gall. Miss A. J. Aldons. 

W. Henry Bruce. Thomas Murdoch, J.P. 

Diploma of Fellowship. 

The Council conferred the Ordinary Diploma of Fellowship on 
J. Penman-Browne ; Robert M. Macdonald ; Fred. J, Pack, B.S.M.E,, 
A.M., Ph.D., Professor of Geology and Mineralogy, subject to their 
complying with the prescribed conditions. 

Centenary of the Geological Society of London. 

The above Society intends to celebrate its Centenary on the 26th, 
27th, and 28th September next, and the President of the R. S. G. S., 
Professor James Geikie, F.R.S., has been appointed delegate to represent 
this Society at the celebration aud to present an address of congratulation. 


The Lagoons of Venice. — In the March number of this Magazine 
it was noted that the Reale Instituto Veneto had decided to investigate 
the phenomena connected with the water-ways of the Lagoons. We 
have now received a Preliminary Statement by Sig. Magrini, in which 
he formulates his programme as follows : — 

I. The study of the propagation of the tidal wave along the western 
coast of the upper Adriatic from the Porto Corsini to the Porto Buso, 
aid the investigation of the bottom of the channels at the entrance 
of the ports. 2. The study of the tidal wave in the lagoon fed by the 
port of Malamocco. Sig. Magrini hojies that these investigations will 
go far to aid future procedure. 


Sven Hedin's Expedition. — This explorer reached Shigatse on 
February 9, and full details of his journey are now available. 

The high plateau land of Central Asia was reached by a pass 
19,500 feet above sea-level. Once in the Ling-zi Thang and Aksai 
Chin (White Desert) travelling proved much easier than had been 
anticipated. Excellent grass was met with every day, and the expedition 
was always able to pitch camp in the neighbourhood of water, though 
sometimes this necessitated long marches. The country Avas com- 


paratively flat and the going good, especially after the autumn frosts set 
in. To north and to south magnificent panoramic views spread them- 
seh'es out before the traveller's eyes, on the one hand lying the parallel 
ranges of the Kuen Luen mountains, and on the other hand the ramifica- 
tions of the Karakorum system. Keeping at first an easterly and after- 
wards a south-easterly course, Dr. Hedin avoided as far as possible the 
region already visited and mapped by other travellers. On reaching 
Lake Lighton, which Dr. Hedin describes as one of the largest and 
most charming lakes he has seen in Tibet, part of the caravan was sent 
back. Two excursions were made on the lake and a number of sound- 
ings were taken. Though he had 220 feet of sounding rope with him, 
Dr. Hedin was twice unable to reach the bottom. On the other hand, 
Pul-cho and Yeshil-kul, two other lakes in the same region, were found 
to be quite shallow. Pursuing his journey he entered an expanse of 
unknown country, and here the real hardships of the journey began. 
The transport animals dwindled in number day by day. There was an 
abundance of water, but rarely any grass ; sometimes not even yak-dung 
Avas to be had for the camp fires. Gradually, however, as the expedition 
advanced to the east, the character of the country improved. Here and 
there a new lake was sighted, and at least every other day a pass had to 
be crossed. 

Eventually the Bogchang Tsanpo was reached and was followed for 
some days. Christmas was spent at Dumbok Cho, intense cold being 
experienced, the thermometer going down as low as —35° Centigrade. 
Storms of wind and sometimes snow blew daily from the west-south- 
west. By the time they reached the northern shores of Ngantse Cho 
both men and animals were completely exhausted. 

On renewing the march southwards the expedition entered upon a 
very complicated stretch of country extending from Ngantse Cho to the 
Tsanpo, or Ui^per Brahmaputra. Several comparatively low passes had 
to be crossed, and five which reached an elevation of 19,000 feet. 
Bitterly cold weather was experienced, with driving snowstoims; but, 
though involving great hardships, the journey was extremely interesting 
and instructive. The first high pass is Sela La, situated in the gigantic 
mountain range — one of the highest in Asia — that foims the watershed 
between Xgantse Cho and Dargra Yum Cho, on the one hand, and the 
L'pper Brahmaputra on the other. Geographically this is one of the 
most interesting passes Dr. Hedin has ever crossed, marking as it docs 
a point on the frontier between the plateauland, with its self-contained 
basins, and the waters that eventually find an outlet in the Indian Ocean. 
The blank spaces on the map of this region have been filled in by Dr. 
Hedin with a veritable labyrinth of mountains and rivers. In between 
all the high passes the expedition crossed rivers flowing due west to the 
My-tsanpo, which in turn flows southwards to the Brahmaputra and is 
a great river, even in winter when frozen over. The last pass, La Eoch, 
l>resented no diflficulties, and from its summit the travellers obtained a 
magnificent view over the Brahmaputra valley, the great river beirg 
seen far below, winding through the valley like a streak of silver. 
From the summit of the pass there is a descent of about a thousand feet 


to the large village of Ye, or, rather, group of villages and temples, 
where the travellers found the first trees they had seen for many months. 
As was invariably the case in Dr. Hedin's experience, the natives showed 
themselves friendly and hospitable. Turning then eastwards, the ex- 
pedition followed the course of the Brahmaputra for three days to 
Shigatse. On the last day, from Sta-nagpo Dr. Hedin descended the 
river in a Tibetan boat, and was cordially received at Shigatse by the 
Tashi lama. From the above it appears that the previous message (see 
p. 159) that Dr. Hedin reached Gyangtse on February 5 must have 
been an error. 

The New Volcanic Island off Burma. — In connection with the 
Note on this island Avhich appeared in our la&t issue (p. 206), it is of 
interest to note that a series of photographs of the island, taken on 
December 31, which show very clearly both the appearance of the island 
from a distance, and the nature of its surface at the time of the visit, 
appears in the April issue of the Geographical Jotirrtal 


The Wellman Polar Expedition. — A Eeuter message states that 
before sailing for New York, Mr. Walter Wellman announced that he 
would again attempt to reach the North Pole by airship during the 
coming summer. The expedition steamer Frithjof, which is now at 
Trondhjem, is to be ready to leave Tromso, with the expedition on board, 
for Spitsbergen on June 1. The party will consist of about thirty-five 
men, and will proceed at once to the expedition base at Dane's Island, 
established last year, where three men are now living. The balloon pait 
of the airship America has been rebuilt. The proper speed of this air- 
ship is 16 to 18 statute miles per hour, and the fuel carried gives 1 50 hours 
of motoring at full speed; the radius of action is thus over 2250 mihs, 
or nearly double the distance from Spitsbergen to the Pole and back 
again. All the mechanical part is being thoroughly tested by weeks of 
lunning, and at Spitsbergen trials will be made in the air of the com- 
pleted ship before attempting the voyage to the Pole. In addition to 
motors, machinery, nearly three and a half tons of petrol, the crew of 
four or five men, a dozen sledge dogs and a completely equipped sledging 
party for a possible return over the ice in case of need, the America will 
carry a ton and a half of food, making it possible for the crew to spend 
the entire winter in the Arctic regions should that be necessary. It is 
planned to reach the expedition base at Spitsbergen in June, to have 
trials of the airship in July, and to stait for the Pole in the latter part 
of that month, or in the first half of August. 

New Belgian Antarctic Expedition. — According to a note in 
Glohus, M. Henryk Arctowski's plans for a new Belgian expedition to 
the Antarctic region are well advanced, and are arousing much interest in 
Belgium. The region to which the expedition is to devote attention is 
that lying between the ground explored by the last Belgian expedition and 


Edward YII. Land. The last expedition reached long. 102° W., and 
there is a vast extent of unexplored territory between this and the 
new land discovered by the Discovery expedition, which, it will be 
remembered, is in 152° W. If, as is expected, continental land is 
reached, it is hoj^ed that this may be explored by the help of motor- 
car sledges, of whose use M. Arctowski has always been a strong 
advocate. The cost of the expedition is estimated at 800,000 francs 
(£32,000), and it is not certain whether it will be able to start this 
October or not. 


The Problem of the Return Trade-winds. — In connection witli 
the account given in this Magazine (p. 116) by the Prince of ^Monaco of 
Professor Hergesell's observations and deductions on the subject of the 
anti-trades, it is of interest to note a paper by Mr. A. Lawrence Rotch 
{Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts and Sci., xlii) on certain observations on the 
subject made during 1905 and 1906. The experiments were performed 
in the Atlantic from the steam-yacht Otaria, under the auspices of the 
author and of M. Teisserenc de Rort, and the results in this case, as 
contrasted with the Princesse Alice experiments, are to show the exist- 
ence of anti-trade winds, which are south-west in the latitude of the 
Canaries, and south-east near the Cape Verde Islands, thus illustrating 
the effect of the earth's rotation. Further, a special investigation made 
in 1906 in the open ocean to the westward of the Canaries showed the 
presence of a south-westerly anti-trade extending upwards from a height 
of betAveen 3000 and 4000 metres, and thus goes so far to disprove 
Professor Hergesell's suggestion that the south-west wind at the summit 
of the Peak of Teneriffe is a local phenomenon, and not, as was pre- 
viously supposed, the true anti-trade. In other words, the result of the 
Rotch and Teisserenc de Bort expedition is to support the older view of 
the position of the return current against the negative position maintained 
by Professor Hergesell on the basis of the Princesse Alice experi- 
ments. The further investigation of the subject will be awaited with 

The Royal Geographical Society's Annual Awards. — With the 
approval of the King, the two Royal Medals have this year been awarded 
by the Council of the Royal Geographical Society — the Founder's to 
Dr. Francisco Moreno, and the Patron's to Dr. Roald Amundsen. 

Dr. Moreno, who is an Argentine, is one of the foremost scientific 
geographers of the day. For more than twenty years he has been 
personally occupied in the work of South American exploration, Pata- 
gonia and the Southern Andes have been his peculiar field, and in the 
prosecution of his work he has encountered unusual risks. He was the 
expert employed by the Government of the Argentine Republic on the 
Chile- Argentina boundary question, and it is to him that we owe nearly 
all our knowledge of the physical geography of the extreme south of 
South America. 


Captain Roald Amundsen, a distinguished Norwegian explorer, has, 
as is well known, only recently completed the North- West Passage for 
the first time in a ship. He served as first lieutenant on board the 
Belgica in the Belgian Antarctic Expedition. On his return he devoted 
himself to mastering the subject of terrestrial magnetism, placing himself 
under the tuition of Dr. von Neumayer, of the Hamburg Observatory, in 
order that he might qualify himself for his projected work ai'ound the 
North Magnetic Pole. After purchasing his ship, the Gjiki, he spent 
some time exploring the ocean between Spitsbergen and Greenland, 
making valuable contributions to oceanography which have since been 
worked out by Dr. Nansen. He sailed for the region around the North 
Magnetic Pole in 1903, in his tiny ship, with eight men all told, all of 
them more or less specialists. He devoted two years to careful observa- 
tions with the best instruments around the North Magnetic Pole, making 
contributions of the first order to knowledge of the geographical distribu- 
tion of magnetism. During the stay of the expedition in the neighbour- 
hood of Boothia, several expeditions were made in various directions. 
A large section hitherto unmapped of the North American coast was 
mapped, and much other geographical work done in the neighbouring 
islands, and careful observations were made on the Eskimo, among whom 
the expedition lived. 

Of the other honours which the Society has at its disposal, the Mur- 
chison Bequest has been awarded to Captain G. E. Smith for his various 
important surveys in British East Africa ; the Gill Memorial to Mr. C. 
Raymond Beazly for his work in three volumes on The Dawn of Modern 
Geography, the result of many years' research ; the Back Bequest to Mr. 
C. E. Moss for his important researches on the geographical distribution 
of vegetation in England; and the Cuthbert Peek Fund to Major C. W. 
Gwynn, C.M.G., D.S.O., R.E., for the important geographical and carto- 
graphical work which he carried out in the Blue Nile region and on the 
proposed Sudan- Abyssinian frontier. 

The Scottish Meteorological Society. — The annual general meet- 
ing of this Society was held in Edinburgh on March 19, Professor 
Crum Brown presiding. The chairman pointed out the need for in- 
creasing the membership of the society, and for making the value of its 
work better known throughout Scotland. Subsequently papers were 
read by Dr. Buchan on " Thunderstorms in Scotland," and on " Varia- 
tions in Mean Monthly Temperatures in Edinburgh " by Mr. R. T. 

Commercial Geography. 

New Railways in Switzerland. — According to the Times, several 
new railway schemes in connection with tourist resorts in Switzerland 
are in a more or less advanced condition. The Anniviers Valley Elec- 
trical Company has been authorised to construct a railway in four 
sections, from Sierre to Vissoye, from Vissoye to Zinal, from Zinal to 
Zermatt, with a branch from Vissoye to St. Luc. This line will yet 


further dimiiiisli the number of tourist resorts without railway communi- 
cation in Switzerland, and as regards the Zinal to Zermatt section at 
least seems a little unnecessary. This section is to cross via Mountet. 
Further, the concession for the long-talked of Matterhorn railway has 
now been applied for, though it is to be hoped that this wholly uncalled- 
for scheme will not be persisted in. 

Another concession of much greater importance applied for is that 
for a railway from Coire to Chiavenna, which would tunnel through the 
Spliigen. The main tunnel would be just under seventeen miles in 
length, of which somewhat more than half would be in Swiss territory 
and the remainder in Italian. The cost w^ould be about five millions 
sterling, and the enterprise would, it is estimated, take some eight years 
to carry out. The total length of the line would be a little over 
fifty-two miles. It is stated that the Italian Government is in favour 
of the scheme, which has received extensive support. 


It is probable that the value of the study of the w^eather changes 
day by day as an introduction to geography and nature study is not so 
fully appreciated by teachers as it might be, while those teachers who 
are convinced of its value may perhaps welcome some account of the 
aids to its study in schools which are furnished by the publications of 
the Meteorological Office. It is hoped that a meeting for teachers and 
others interested in education may be held during the autumn in con- 
nection with the Society of Edinburgh, when a paper would be read on 
the value of meteorology as a part of geography, followed by a discussion 
on the subject. Meantime, examples of the Meteorological Office's 
publications have been laid on the library table for inspection by those 
interested. This office publishes weather reports in three forms. The 
Dailij report is issued daily at 2 P.M., and is supplied post free for five 
shillings a quarter. Single copies can be obtained from the Meteoro- 
logical Office, 63 Victoria Street, London, S.W., for the sum of one 
penny plus postage, while copies for class use can be obtained on giving 
notice at the rate of Gd. per ten copies. The daily report gives the 
observations of barometer, thermometer, wind, weather, etc., for the 
evening and morning preceding publication, with notes on foreign 
stations, etc., and, the feature of greatest value for teaching purposes, 
charts showing the pressure, temperature, etc., for the morning of the 
day of publication. With the opening of the new cable to Faeroe and 
Iceland it has been possible to extend the charts over a much larger 
part of the Atlantic than was formerly included, and as three baro- 
metric charts appear on the same sheet, it is possible to follow in the 
clearest and most satisfactory way the approach of barometric depressions 
from the west. For example, the charts for February 20 show very 
clearly the approach and path of the great storm which wrecked the 
Berlin the following day. It can hardly be questioned that in a sea- 


fariug nation the power to read &ucli a chart should be in the possession 
of every school child. There can be little doubt also that the right 
method is to let the scholars make observations of their own for their 
own locality, and then by means of the weather charts let them see that 
the local changes are all part of a great cycle which is affecting the 
weather of the whole country. 

The JVeeldy weather report is a quarto document of eight pages, 
which is sold at the price of 6d., and can be obtained singly from 
Messrs. Oliver and Boyd, Edinburgh, or can be obtained for an annual 
subscription of £1, 10s. post free. It contains a very large amount of 
information in regard to the meteorological conditions for the week, to- 
gether with three charts, one of temperature and two showing wind and 
isobars for every day of the preceding week. These chaits are reduced 
in size as compared with the daily charts, but there is of course a great 
educational advantage in being able to follow the changes simultaneously 
through a whole weekly period. 

Finally, beginning with January of the present year, the Meteoro- 
logical Office publishes a Monthly report, sold at the price of 6d. per single 
copy, or 6s. 6d. per annum post free, which gives a summary of the 
weather conditions during the month, and includes four maps showing 
the average conditions during the month. The first of these deals with 
pressure and wind, and compares the average for the particular month 
with the average for the same month during a thirty-five years' period. 
The second, a very interesting chait, shows the path of depressions 
during the month, while the remaining two illustrate temperature and 

On p. 102 we noted here an article byM. Miickel on "La Geographie 
de la Circulation." A second part of this article appears in the Annates 
de G6ogra2ohie for January 15, and may be also recommended to the 
notice of teachers as full of interesting and suggestive points, and 
Avith many references which will be found useful to teachers. The 
present article is concerned with methods of communication on 
land, a subject which is exceptionally well suited for useful lessons. 
It treats of roads and paths, means of transport, animal and 
mechanical, and methods of transmitting information in their relation 
to geography, and, to a less extent, to history. That man is the 
dearest and least efficient of transport animals is well known, but it is 
interesting to note that his intelligence, prudence, and power of negotiat- 
ing narrow and difficult passages make him an exceedingly useful one 
wherever the special conditions demand these qualities. The bearing of 
these facts on the evolution of the slave trade of Africa, for example, is 
a point of great interest, as is also the gradual replacement theie of the 
porter by motor-car or railway train. But without stopping to mention 
in detail the numerous interesting matters with which the article deals, 
we may recommend to the notice of teachers the following dictum as 
one which it is important to impress in all its bearing upon their pupils : 
— "Circulation is a movement provoked by the variety of the resources 
of the globe, where nature has distributed unequally the sum total of 


commodities and work among peoples and States. It is the local variety 
of nature which has created circulation, the means of obtaining economic 
equilibrium among peoples. ... It is the principal agent in the develop- 
ment of States ; it prepares the foundation of their power and is an 
essential element of their organisation ; there is no State without an 
economic policy, however rudimentary." 



The Passing of Korea. By Homer E. Hulbert, A.M., F.R.G.S. 
London : William Heinemann, 1906. Price 16s. net. 

Since the days of the Rasso-Japanese war we have had several books which 
have dealt more or les5 comprehensively with the Empire of Korea. The latest 
of these is the handsome and well-illustrated volume now before us from the 
cipable pen of Mr. Homer R. Hulbert, the author of several well-known works, 
amongst others a History of Korea. This book seems to have been written in 
the first instance for the special enlightenment of the American public, bu t 
it will find, as it certainly deserves, agreat number of interested readers on this 
side of the Atlantic. It jmrports to be a defence as well as a description and 
history of the Koreans, and the author is indignant and sore that one result of 
the Russo-Japanese war has been the loss of the independence of Korea and 
its practical subjugation by Japan. He hardly disguises his distrust and dislike 
of our Eastern ally, although he cannot but admit her military prowess and 
marvellous advance in the arts and sciences of peace. He wisely refrains from 
prophecy, and contents himself with saying that " it is difficult to foresee what 
the resultant civilisation of Japan will be. There is nothing final as yet, nor 
have the conflicting forces indicated along whit definite lines the intense 
nationalism of the Japanese will develop." 

With every desire and intention to show us the best side of the Koreans, Mr. 
Hidbert has, we fear, been too honest and truthful in his descriptions of the 
Korean court and people. Take for example the important matter of religion. 
Of this Mr. Hulbert points out that so long ago as the sixth and seventh centuries, 
Korea became " the slave of Chinese thought. She lost all spontaneity and 
originality. To imitate became her highest ambition, and she lost sight of all 
beyond this contracted horizon. Intrinsically and potentially the Korean is a 
man of high intellectual possibilities, but he is, superficially, what he is by virtue 
of his training and education. Take him out of this environment, and give him a 
chance to develop independently and naturally, and you would have as good a 
b.-ain as the Far East has to offer." But it seems to us that what has happened 
is precisely what Mr. Hulbert here desiderates. Korea under the stimulus of 
Japanese civilisation will be taken out of its time-worn environment, and will get 
a chance of development such as has never occurred hitherto in its history. The 
conservatism and backwardness of tha Koreans as described by Mr. Hulbert are 
phenomenal. What are we to think of a nation which up to thirty years ago con- 
fined itself to the use of flint and steel, declined to use petroleum, sewing-needles, 
thread, soap, and a thousand other articles of daily use, and where " every man 
wai obliged to carry on his person a small piece of wood on which were written 
his nime, the year of his birth, and his rank. Any one who failed to carry this 


tag was considered an outlaw." The Korean as depicted by Mr. Hulbert is 
excessively proud and improvident, lavish of his own money when he has any, and 
with that of others when he has none of his own ; he sees " about as much moral 
turpitude in a lie as we see in a mixed metaphor or a split infinitive " ; his 
language when angry is unspeakably filthy and gross, and his conduct like that 
of an insane person or "of a fanged beast" ; he is utterly callous to the sufl^erings 
of animals : per contra, he is hospitable when he has tlie means of being so. The 
system of Government as described by Mr. Hulliert evokes wonder that any 
nation, however submissive, could tolerate it for half a dozen years ; and his 
graphic descriptions of the procedure of the so-called Courts of Justice are equally 
astounding. Blackmail, it seems, is a fine art, and is practised in all walks of 
life. With regard to means of communication, there are now a few miles of 
railway in Korea, but by far the greater part of the roads throughout the Empire 
are mere bridle-paths, fit only for the use of bullocks, ponies, and men ; and 
Mr. Hulbert is of opinion that " more dead weight is carried on men's backs than 
on those of bullocks and horses combined." The only important industries in 
Korea are agriculture, fishing, and mining. In literature the Korean is as con- 
servative and backward as he is in other things. "Imitation of past writings is 
the highest excellence to be achieved. Not only is there no such thing as 
originality, but the very word itself is wanting." There is, strange to say, an 
encyclopfedia in a hundred and twelve volumes, and there are a few somewhat 
disreputable novels. Education is confined to Chinese classics, and in each 
village is conducted " in a little room in a private house where the boys sit on 
the floor with their large print-books of Chinese character before them, and as 
they sway back and forth with half-shut eyes, they drone out the sounds of the 
ideographs, not in unison, but each for himself. There is no such thing as a 
class, for no two of the boys are together." The petty sum of twenty thousand 
dollars is all that the State expends on education. With regard to the position of 
women in Korea, Mr. Hulbert judiciously remarks that "under existing moral 
conditions the seclusion of women in the Far East is a blessing and not a curse, 
and its immediate abolishment would result in a moral chaos rather than, as some 
suppose, in the elevation of society." 

The description we have thus given of the Koreans is practically that of Mr. 
Hulbert, and taking him at his own word the inference seems inevitable, "that 
the Korean people are a degenerate and contemptible nation, incapable of better 
things, intellectually inferior, and better off under Japanese rule than indepen- 
dent." But as a matter of fact, Korea has not yet been annexed ; it has merely 
been brought within the sphere of Japan's influence and taken under her pro- 
tection ; and it lies within her own power to profit by the proximity of a civilisa 
tion which is far beyond what she has ever dreamed of. 

It is very obvious that Mr. Hulbert is profoundly indignant at and resentful of 
the treatment of Korea by the United States of America. " If there is any 
nation on earth," he says, "that deserves the active and substantial aid of the 
American people, that nation is Korea. . . . But when the time of difficulty 
approached and America's disinterested friendship was to be called upon to prove 
the genuineness of its oft-repeated ijrotestations, we deserted her with such 
celerity, such cold-heartedness, and such a refinement of contempt, that the blood 
of every decent American citizen in Korea boiled with indignation. While the 
most loyal, cultured and patriotic Koreans were committing suicide one after the 
other, because they could not survive the death of their country, the American 
Minister was toasting the perpetrators of the outrage in bumpers of champagne ; 
utterly callous to the death-throes of an Empire which had treated American 


citizens with a courtesy and consideration they had enjoyed in no other Oriental 
country." But however it may have come about, we are convinced that the 
present condition and prospects of Korea in no way warrant any gloomy prog- 
nostications as to its future ; on the contrary, they are more healthy and hopeful 
than they have ever been since Korea first merged from obscurity into the light 
of history in the days of Kija, who, it is said, flourished before the reign of David 
in Jerusalem. 

We cordially recommend this valuable and exhaustive work to our readers. 
]Mr. Hulbert is master of an easy and perspicuous style, and it is very evident that 
he has made a profound and sympathetic study of Korea and its people, but this has 
not prevented his observing and recording the many and grave defects and faults 
in their character. His chapters on the folklore, religion, superstition and burial 
customs of Korea are very interesting and instructive, and some of his transla- 
tions of Korean poetry are graceful and melodious. 

The Tod'xs. By W. H. R. PiIvers, Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge. With 
Illustrations. London : Macmillan and Co., 1906. Price 2ls. net. 

It does not often happen in this country that a man enters upon the anthropo- 
logical examination of a primitive people like the Todas so well equipped by 
previous experience for the task as Mr. W. Rivers. He formed one of the mem- 
bers of the Cambridge expedition in charge of Dr. Haddon, sent out a few years 
ago to investigate the tribes of New Guinea and the islands of the Torres Straits. 
He was therefore well qualified to gather information, down to the minutest 
particulars, concerning the social organisation, the daily life, the religion, the 
myths, the ceremonies performed at birth, marriage and death, etc., of the Todas. 
The result is a stout volume, sufficiently illustrated, that may be placed in the 
same category as the two important works of Messrs. Spencer and Gillen on the 
native tribes of Central Australia, to which volumes it forms a worthy pendant. 

The Todas who now inhabit the Niigiri Hills are grouped round the hill-station 
of Ootacamund in the Madras Presidency and have excited the interest and curi- 
osity of many visitors to this sanatorium. They difi'er in appearance from other 
natives of Southern Indin, being lighter in colour, so that some writers have 
supposed them to be of Aryan or Caucasic origin. They arc divided into two 
endogamous divisions, each of which is sub-divided into smaller exogamous septs. 
What distinguishes the Todas pre-eminently from other peoples is their cult of the 
cow buffalo, for they pay no attention to the bull, who does not even receive a 
name. The basis of the greater part of the ritual of the Todas consists in the 
milking and churning at the dairies, which may really be regarded as temples. 
These are held so sacred that the author was never allowed to enter within the 
walls enclosing the dairy, still less to enter the building itself. Save at appointed 
times women are also excluded from the precincts of the dairy. A certain amount 
of sanctity is attached to the head dairyman, and to attain this dignity, which in 
these degenerate days is not coveted, he must undergo a ceremony of initiation, the 
central feature of which is purification, and lead a life entailing considerable priva- 
tion during the few years he holds office. He must be celibate and leave his wife ; 
he may not go home or visit the bazaar or attend funerals, and ho must never be 
touched by an ordinary man. 

The gods of the Todas are thought of as invisible and inhabiting the hilltops, 
but in other respects they are human, for each has his own dairies and bufi'aloes. 
They seem to be a development of hill-spirits, and there is little to show that 
ancestor worship has played any part in the evolution of their religion or that gods 


are personifications of the forces of Nature. Sometimes a hero might be raised to 
the dignity of a god. Kwoto, for instance, was of human parentage, but aspired to 
belong to the society of gods. After giving proof of his strength before the gods, 
they asked him if he could tie the sun with a stone chain. Forthwith Kwoto put 
a stone-chain round the sun and hauled it down to the ground, and as it was thirsty 
he took it to a stream to allow it to drink. After such an exhibition of his power 
Kwoto was acknowledged to be the mightiest of the gods. 

The magic beliefs of the Todas, their methods of divination, and the character 
of their spells for curing disease, are much on the same lines as those of other 
people on a similar plane of civilisation. As regards funeral rites, they practise 
cremation, and the funeral ceremonies are sometimes prolonged for months. One 
of the ceremonies, that of " earth throwing," may possibly mean that inhumation 
was the funeral rite formerly, and that cremation is of more recent origin. Buffa- 
loes are sacrificed on these occasions ; yet the Todas do not eat the flesh but give 
it to the Kotas, another hill-tribe of different origin, who supply the Todas with 
earthenware and other objects they cannot manufacture for themselves. Before 
the corpse is burnt all the ornaments Avith which it was adorned are removed — a 
practice which does not prevent the people from believing that the deceased is not 
thereby deprived of these objects in the other world. This world of the dead is 
supposed to lie to the west and to be illumined by the same sun as ours. The sun 
is an object of reverence, and every man on leaving his hut in the morning is care- 
ful to salute it with a special gesture. But no reverence seems to be paid to fire 
or to the moon, and there is no evidence of phallic worship. 

The Todas have the classificatory system of kinship and practice polyandry, 
usually fraternal. When a woman marries a man she becomes the wife of all his 
brothers. A man can and ought to marry the daughter of his maternal uncle or 
of his paternal aunt, but he may not marry the daughter of his paternal uncles or 
of his maternal aunts. The rule that a man must take a wife from a clan different 
from his own partly accounts for these prohibitions. 

In the last chapter the author discusses the possible origin of the Todas. He 
is inclined to believe that they came to the Nilgiri Hills from Malabar. The 
he id-measurements of the Todas correspond very closely with those of the Nairs, 
who also practise fraternal polyandry and whose social and religious customs 
closely resemble those of the Todas. The Toda language appears to be much like 
Malayalam, so that there is a good deal to be said for the author's opinion. Yet 
the Todas can only be derived from any of the Malabar races on the supposition 
that the migration took place a very long time ago. 

In the appendix will be found 72 genealogical tables in which the genealogy of 
736 persons, or nearly the whole existing Toda population, is carried back for three 
or four generations. The work and the toil involved in preparing this almost 
novel method of research must have been immense. 

My Pilgrimage to the Wise Men of the East. By Moncure D. Coxwat. 
Archibald Constable and Co., Ltd., 1906. Price 12s. 6d. net. 

The first impression which the reader has, is that this is not a book of travel 
in the ordinary sense, nor of immediate interest to the geographer. Indeed 
Mr. Conway frankly says that he is not so much impressed with scenery and 
places as with his fellow-creatures. As the reader advances through the volume, 
he realises that he has before him a document of considerable interest to the 
student of religion, for the author has used the occasion to pass in review the 
religious experiences of his life. The Pilgrimage will chiefly appeal to those 


who are drawn to the form of belief of which Moncure Conway is one of the 
foremost exponents, but even those who do not like either his views or methods, 
will find a certain element of pathos in these pages. For in the foreword he 
relates how he first came to study the religions of the East by having put into his 
hands the translation by Wilkins of the Bhagavat Gita, and how he was affected 
by the wonderful dialogue of Krishna and Arjuna. Then, as he relates, came his 
opportunity, in 1882, when he was enabled to go round the world and meet face 
to face with the followers of the old religions. Hence this work. In it we have 
an account of the many interesting men and women he met, not to speak of the 
numberless cranks of all sorts from Arabi to Madame Blavatsky. 

We may doubt very much whether he gained greatly by his personal inter- 
course with the Hindu. He seemed to travel with a mind eager to accept 
anything antagonistic to the religion in which he was reared, and it would be 
strange if he were not indulged to the top of his bent. 

We are glad to see that Mr. Conway renders full justice to the catholic spirit 
in which the British Government fulfils its great responsibilities. 

Under the Sun. By Perceval Landon. London : Hurst and Blackett, 
Limited, 1906. Price Us. 6d. net. 

In this work the reader has a series of brightly written sketches, describing 
over a score of the well-known cities of India. The subject is somewhat hack- 
neyed now, but the interest attached to our Indian Empire is perennial, and Mr. 
Landon's work is sure to find acceptance with a large body of readers. It is to be 
followed by another work, dealing in a similar way with some of the towns which 
are not so well known. The book is embellished with some excellent photo- 

Tamil Grammar Self-Taught. By Don M. de Zilva Wickremasixghe. 
London : Marlborough and Co., 1906. Price 5s. 

This useful little volume is a valuable addition to the series of which it fcin s 
a member. As it informs us, the Tamil language is spoken by more than sixteen 
millions of people in India and Northern Ceylon, in addition to the large Tamil 
communities in the tea plantations of Burma, Straits Settlements, etc., so that 
the grammar should be of interest to not a few persons in this country. 

The First Expedition of the Portuguese to Banda. By James Koxburgh 
M'Cltmont, M.A. Hobart : Privately printed, 1905. 

Mr. M'Clymont has given a very interesting account of one of Albuquerque's 
great achievements. In order to "place" this particular expedition, the reader 
may be referred to Sir W. W. Hunter's History of British India. It was war to 
the knife between Islam and Christendom ; and in order to cripple the 
Mohammedan trade with the Far East, Albuquerque's scheme was to occupy 
three main points of control, at Ormuz, at Goa, and ]\Ialacca ; and it was in 
pursuance of this plan that he undertook and carried out the expedition. 

Mr. M'Clymont fills in from original sources many details which are barely 
touched upon by Hunter, and shows how, after reducing Malacca, the great 
admiral sailed round the coast of Java, and finally landed at Banda. 

We welcome this careful monograph dealing with a period of history which 
is almost without parallel, and yet which is only veiy in peifectly Isrcwn. 


Lotus Land: Being an Account of the Country and the People of Southern Siam. 
By P. A. Thompson, B.A. A.M.LC.E. etc. London : T. "Werner Laurie, 
1906. Price 16s. net. 

This book is a solid and most satisfactory piece of work. After giving an 
interesting historical sketch of the history of Siam in the introduction, the author, 
who has resided for three years amongst the peasantry there, presents for our 
edification a lucid and graphic description of the country and its inhabitants, art, 
religion and conditions of life. He has, however, omitted all tales of adventure or 
any account of the rulers of Siam. 

In the introduction Mr. Thompson has sought with success to reconcile the 
conflicting statements of his authorities, and urges Europeans living in the country 
still further to clear up many points not yet elucidated. We trust that his request 
will be acceded to. 

The excellent illustrations from photographs by the author are a noteworthy 
feature in the book. His description of Bangkok is lively, vivid and sympathetic 
withal ; it shows an accurate and comprehensive observation, as does the whole 

The Siamese have a great reverence for authority, and this may explain why 
Europeans have found it so easy to deal with those placed under their rule. Still 
they are not servile, and, while perfectly polite, speak to Europeans as one free 
man to another. Good subordinates, they do not show much administrative 
ability, and hence European advisers are employed together with Americans. 
The general adviser to the Government at present is an American ; railways, 
postal arrangements and the telegraph system are under Germans ; the navy and the 
gendarmerie under Danes ; public works are superintended by Italians, and French- 
men rule the sanitation ; Belgians look after justice and finance, while customs, educa- 
tion, mining and survey are officered by the British : truly an international pot-pourri, 
but it seems to work well. The Buddhist religion is well and sympathetically 
described; the Buddhist attitude towards warring sects is thus described: "A 
company of blind men were once w.alking along a road when it chanced that they 
met an elephant. Each felt the animal, and then they fell to discussing what it 
was that they had met. One had felt only the tusk,'and he said it was something 
round and smooth ; another hai felt the ear, and he said it was something large 
and flat ; a third had felt a leg and he declared it was like the trunk of a tree, 
while a fourth who had felt the tail said that it was a rope. Soon they began to 
quarrel over it and then from words they proceeded to blows, but a certain sage 
who had witnessed the occurrence stopped them and said, ' Had you but pieced 
together the facts you each perceived, you would, amongst you, have arrived at 
the truth.' " 

The temples, symbols, and brotherhood of the yellow robe are well described. 
Siamese art is studied with care, and we can promise our readers much pleasure and 
instruction from the volume as a whole. We do not often get such a satisfactory 
book to review. 


A Tr avers VAfrique Gentrale (Tra Mez-Afriko). Conference avec projections 
donnee au 2™« Congres Universel d'Esperanto a Geneve, P'' Septembre 1906. 
Par Le Commandant Lemaire, Ch. Bruges : A. S. Witteryck, Editeur. 
This is an illustrated report of an address delivered by Commandant Lemaire, 

printed in French and Esperanto, the pages being so arranged as to facilitate the 


learning of Espeninto by any one familiar with French. The address, which gives 
a popular account of Commandant Lemaire's crossing of Africa, is extremely 
fresh and interesting, and we recommend the pamphlet to the notice of all 
interested alike in geography and Esperanto. 

In the same connection we may note that we have also received a communica- 
tion from the "Delegation for the adoption of an International Auxiliary Lan- 
guage" in connection with the Third Universal Congress of Esperantists, to 
be held at Cambridge this August. 

Uganda by Pen and Camera. By C. W. Hatterslet. London : Religious 
Tract Society, 1906. Price 2s. 

This little book, which is written in a somewhat artless style, is chiefly of value 
to those who are interested in mission work in Uganda, but incidentally gives 
some information as to the scenery and people of L^ganda, and of those met with 
on the journey thither from Mombasa. The book is illustrated by numerous 
jDhotographs, and indicates clearly the progress which has been recently made in 

Wisa Handbook: A Short Introduction to the Wisa Dialed of North-East 
Rhodesia. By A. C. Madan. Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1906. Price 3s. 

We published here recently an appeal from the author of this book for infor- 
mation in regard to the languages of the Bantu races. In the preface to the 
present handbook of the hitherto little-known Wisa dialect, he points out that it 
has all the characteristic grammatical peculiarities of the Bantu type. The 
language is spoken not only by the Wisas, but in a slightly modified form also 
by the Lalas, who live between the Loangwa and the Kafue rivers in about 
29' to 30° E. long., and 14" S. lat. Besides an account of the language, the hand- 
book contains in an appendix two Wisa stories, with translation and notes, and 
should be very useful to students. 

The Egypt of the Future. By Edward Dicey, C.B. London: William 
Heinemann, 1907. Pp. 216. Price 3»-. 6rf. net. 

Mr. Dicey is so well known as a writer upon things Egyptian that anything 
from his vigorous pen is sure to be widely read, and whatever view may be taken 
of the main contention of this book, it is at any rate informative and eminently 
readable. In Mr. Dicey's opinion the true policy of this country towards Egypt 
is at once to regularise our position by declaring the country a British Protectorate, 
taking over the Public Debt, abolishing the Capitulations and Mixed Courts, and 
then reforming the administration in various ways, notably by a far larger 
employment of native officials. He holds that the present anomalous position 
lays us open at any time to that demand for International Control, as opposed to 
the " free hand," which Germany asserted and established in the case of Morocco. 
Moreover, he says there is a steadily growing obstacle in the form of passive 
resistance from the Egyptians themselves, due to the spread of native newspapers, 
ill-digested education, and the Pan-Islamic movement. The official view th;it the 
Fellaheen recognise so fully the advantages which have accrued to them under 
our rule that they desire nothing better than its continuance, is scouted by Mr. 
Dicey. Gratitude among Orientals occupies a small place compared to creed. A 
further plea for action is that ere long in his view the break-up of the Turkish 
Empire must occur, and the whole question of Egypt and our position there will 
be forced immediately upon the attention of other countries. It is better to strike 


now. That M'e must in some form retain and strengthen our hold upon Ejiypt 
for the sake of our Indian Empire is a point upon which Mr. Dicey has no 
doubts whatever. 

The book contains a very frank criticism of Lord Cromer's policy of adminis- 
tration, which the writer holds to be conducted for the benefit of England first 
and of Egypt only in the second place, to be out of touch with native feeling, and 
too autocratic. He admits at the same time that the country has throughout its 
history been ruled by a succession of despots, and that the late Consul-General 
was as good an absolute ruler as Egypt has ever possessed. But he declares his 
preference for the policy advocated by Lord Dufierin— that adopted in the Native 
States of India and elsewhere — under which supreme authority is vested in the 
representative of the Protecting Power, native administrators are employed as 
fully as is possible, and while considerable latitude is allowed them as to their 
methods, they are sternly punished in the case of any gross abuse or scandal. 

Our impression is, that although some readers will adopt the view on behalf of 
which Mr. Dicey has issued this book, the majority, especially in view of the 
difficulties which he so ably expounds, will not support his advocacy of a cov2) d'etat, 
but will rather adhere to the policy attributed to Lord Cromer which is described 
as going on as we are until some fine day the world discovers that we have estab- 
lished a Protectorate without anybody knowing that we have done so. We may 
note that the book was published before the issue of Lord Cromer's 1906 Eeport, 
ia which his legislative proposals are further developed. In any case the book, 
which we understand was at once translated into Arabic, is sure of a large circle 
of readers. 

We are glad to note, for little credit is given nowadays to the possibility of 
friendly action on the part of Germany, that Mr. Dicey attributes to her inter- 
vention at Constantinople the collapse of the recent Akabah incident. 


Canada To-day. By J. A. Hobson, M.A. London : T. Fisher Unwin, 1906. 

Price 3.S. Gd. net. 

In the winter of 1905-6 Mr. Hobson, a convinced free-trader, contributed a 
series of letters to the Daily Chronicle setting forth his impressions on the 
subject of Free Trade versus Protection with special reference to Canada and the 
United States. These letters are rewritten and republished with a number of 
corrections and additions in the volume now before us. Incidentally we got 
some information as to the progress, resources and conditions of Canada of the 
present day. 


Hints to Travellers: Scientific and General. Edited for the Council of the Royal 
Geographical Society by G. A. Reeves, F.R.A.S., F.R.G.S. Ninth Edition, 
revised and enlarged. 2 vols. Price 15s. net. London : The Royal Geo- 
grai^hical Society. 

The Royal Geographical Society must be heartily congratulated on the new 
edition of these valuable volumes, Hints to Travellers, and more particularly must 
congratulations be given to Mr. Reeves, the able editor, to whom is due the thanks 
of all geographers, and especially all practical travellers and explorers. In a 
wonderful way he has compressed into these two volumes practically everything 
that is necessary for intending explorers, and the size and general arrangement of 
these books make them a valuable vade mecum for explorers in the field. 


One particularly notices the additions to the ninth edition, which has been 
brought up to date in a way that leaves nothing to be desired. 

Looking through the first volume, one notices certain additions which we feel 
ought to be briefly mentioned in this article. The section entitled "Introductory 
Remarks" serves as a general guide to survey work to be undertaken, the methods 
to follow, the instruments to use, so that the geographical surveyor may follow 
the most accurate method for work under whatever circumstances he may be 
placed The need of this particular section has long been felt, and we are glad 
to see that Mr. Reeves has included it in this edition. The outfit list has been 
considerably altered, and an approximate price-list of instruments has been 
added, which will guide intending travellers when contemplating any expedition, 
and give them a reliable figure to base their calculation of cost upon. 

In Part ii. we notice that the theodolite has received more adequate notice, and 
the small 4" transit theodolite which has been specially designed by Mr. Reeves for 
travellers, to whom weight is a great consideration, is, from what we know of the 
subject, a vast improvement. It is fitted with Mr. Reeves's tangent micrometer, 
which enables readings to be taken with great accuracy. This, we believe, is the 
first published description of this micrometer and theodolite, and from information 
received from surveyors who work with this instrument, it leaves nothing to be 
desired. We also notice that the mathematical principle of the sextant is given 
for the first time in this v;ork. 

The Editor seems to be of the opinion that Captain George's Mercurial 
Barometer, the description of which was left out of the last edition but is now 
reinserted, is the best class of barometer for a traveller to take, owing to the tubes 
being carried empty. 

From pages 86 to 93 a special new section of sketches and projections of maps, 
and a complete example of a projection (Survey of India Projection), is inserted. 

Part IV. is entitled Geographical Surveying and Mapping, and nearly the whole 
of this important section is entirely new to the book, and contains much infor- 
mation. It gives descriptions of base measurements, interpolation of points, a 
■ complete example of theodolite traversing, reduction to centre, accurate methods of 
computing geodetic distances, latitudes, longitudes, and azimuths, route survey- 
ing with example of field-book ; a complete chapter on determination of height 
by levelling, theodolite vertical angles, barometer and boiling point, and an 
example of contouring. The photographic surveying section has been rewritten 
and made more general, hints being given on making use of ordinary photographs 
in surveying. At the end of this section methods of adjusting theodolite angles 
are briefly given. 

In Part v.. Astronomical Observations, we note that for the first time this 
section ia prefaced by the definitions of practical astronomy, which must be of 
considerable assistance to beginners ; then follow examples of astronomical 
observations for latitude, time, longitude, and azimuths. The most important 
feature of this is that many of them are taken with the transit theodolite, which 
is certainly the instrument for land surveying. The formula employed in each case 
is also set, which was never done before, so that one need not work mechanically. 

We also note that at the end of the volume many new and important tables 
have been added. In volume ii. much has been done to bring it up to date, but 
the changes in this volume are nothing compared with those in the first volume. 

Mr. Reeves is indeed to be congratulated on an accurate, painstaking, and 
excellent work, much of which is original, but he fully acknowledges in the preface 
his indebtedness to many other gentlemen who assisted him. 


The Science Year-Booh and Diary for 1907. Edited by Major B. F. S. Baden- 
Powell. London : King, Sell, and Olding. Price 5s. 
We published a somewhat lengthy review of this annual last year, so that it is 
only necessary to say that the alterations in the present issue are not numerous. 
The Report of Scientific Progress has been modified, but still shows need of im- 
provement. We notice that in the article Natural History text headings which 
must have been present in the MS. have been omitted by the compositors, with 
very bizarre results, as for examj^le, the implied inclusion of the tsetse-fly among 
the nudibranch molluscs ! Throughout the articles also adjectives are employed 
with a profusion which suggests log-rolling, and is certainly inelegant ; thus a 
British Association address is described as " extremely fascinating." We have 
noticed a lai'ge number of serious misprints. 

The World of To-Day. Vol. vi. By A. E. Hope Moncrieff. London : 

Gresham Publishing Company, 1906. Pp. 380. Numerous illustrations. 

Price 8s. net. 

This is the concluding volume of a notable series, produced too within a short 

space of time, if one considers the all-world area which is comprised, and the 

excellence of the workmanship. To include in the survey of this one volume, 

as he does, the United States, Canada, Arctic America, and all Eurojie, has 

demanded from the author a greater power of compression than was required in 

the other volumes. But his w^riting never fails to be free and interesting and 

informative. The illustrations as hitherto are well selected and well reproduced, 

and the comprehensive index deserves mention. We congratulate Mr. Hope 

Moncrieff on having made in this series a distinguished addition to the long list 

of excellent works which already stands to his credit. 


ORDNANCE SURVEY OF SCOTLAND.— The following publications were issued 
from 1st to 28th Feliruary 1907 : — One-inch Map (third edition), engraved, in 
outline. Sheets 28, 51. Price Is. 6d. each. 

Six-inch and Larger Scale Maps. — Six-inch Maps (Revised), full sheets, en- 
graved, without contours. Eoss and Cromarty. — Sheet 25. Price 2s. 6d. Full 
Sheets, heliozincographed, with contours. Ross and Cromarty. — Sheets, 76, 78. 
Price 2s. 6d. each. Sheets, 30, 43, 90. Price 2s. each. Without contours. Boss 
and Cromarty. — Sheets 26, 40. Price 2s. 6d. each. 

1 : 2500 Scale Maps (Revised), with Houses stippled, and with Areas. Price 3s. 
each. Edinhnrghshire. — Sheets vi. 1, 3, 5, 7, 10, 11, 13, 15, 16 ; xi. 4 ; xii. 2, 
3, 5. Sheet ii. 3. Price Is. 6d. 

Note. — There is no coloured edition of these Sheets, and the unrevised 
impressions are withdrawn from sale. 

The following publications were issued from 1st to 31st March 1907 : — One- 
inch Map (third edition), engraved, with Hills in Brown or Black. Sheets 28, 51. 
Price Is 6d. each. 

Diagrams (County). Scale four miles to one inch, showing Civil Parishes, with 
a Table of their Areas. Elginshire and Nairnshire. Price 6d. each. 

Six-inch and Larger Scale Maps. — Six-inch Maps (Revised), full sheets, helio- 
zincographed, with contours. Inverness-shire. — Sheets 2, 3, 4. Price 2s. 6d. 
each. Sheet 1a. Price 2s. -Ross and Cromarty. — Sheets 18a, 27, 28, 41, 52, 


54, 55, 64, 65, 66, 77, 88, 89, 99, 100, 101. Price 2s. 6d. each. Sheets 67, 79. 
Price 2s. each. Sutherland. — Sheets 108, 112. Price 2s. 6d. each. Without 
contours. Boss and Cromarty. — Sheets 11a, 18, 29, 39, 53. Price 2s. 6d. each. 
Stitherland.— Sheets, 102, 103. Price 2s. 6d. each. Sheet 113. Price 2s. 

1 : 2500 Scale Maps (Revised), with Houses stippled, and with Areas. Price 
3s. each. Edinburghshire. — Sheets ii. 11, 14, 15 ; v. 3, 7, 8, (10 and 6), 11, 12, 
14, 15, 16 ; VI. 2, 6, 8, 9, 12, 14 ; vii. 13 ; xi. 2, 3 ; xii. 1, 4, 16 ; xiii. 1, 5, 13 ; 
xvni. 4. Sheets ii. 6 (13 and 9) ; v. 13. Price Is. 6d. each. 

Note. — There is no coloured edition of these Sheets, and the unrevised 
impressions are withdrawn from sale. 

GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF SCOTLAND —The following publications were issued 
from 1st to 31st March 1907 : — Four miles to one inch, colour printed. Sheets 
16, 17. Price 2s. 6d. each. 

ADMIRALTY CHART, SCOTLAND.— Ports in the Shetland Islands : Balta Harbour. 
Surveyed by Lieut. C. C. Bell, E.N., 1906. Scale 1 : 6900. Published Jan. 
1907. Number 3643 (3657). Price 2s. Admiralty Office, London. 

CHANNEL ISLANDS. — Bartholomew's Reduced Survey Maps of the . 19(i7. 

Jersey on scale of \h inches to mile, Guernsey 1| to mile, Sark 2 inches to 
mile. Price Is., or mounted on cloth in case 2s. 

John Bartholometo and Co., Edinburgh. 
A sheet of maps specially prepared for the use of tourists in the Channel Islands. 

TURKEY. — Environs of Adrianojjle. Scale 1 : 250,000 or about 4 miles to an 
inch. Sept. 1906. Price 2s. 6d. 

Topograxjhical Section, General Staff, London. 

RUSSIA.— Caucasia. Scale 1 : 2,027,520 or 32 miles to an inch. 1906. 

Topographical Survey, General Staff, London. 


ANGLO-PORTUGUESE BOUNDARY North and South of the Zambesi. Map in 7 
sheets. Scale 1 : 250,000 or about 4 miles to an inch. Nov. 1906. 

Topographical Section, General Staff, London. 

GAMBIA. — Reproduced from the work of the Anglo-French Boundary Commission, 
1904-1905. Scale 1 : 250,000 or about 4 miles to an inch. 2 sheets. 1906 
Price 2s. each sheet. Topograjihical Sectio7i, General Staff] London. 

GERMAN SOUTH-WEST AFRICA.— Scale 1 : 3,000,000 or about 50 miles to an inch. 
Dec. 1906. Tojjographical Section, General Staff', London. 

GOLD COAST.— General Staff Map on Scale of 1 : 1,000,000. Parts of Sheets 60, 
72, and 73. 1906. In 2 sheets. Price 2s. each sheet. 

SOMALILAND.— Map of Portion of . General Staff Map on Scale of 

1 : 1,000,000. 1906. Topographical Section, General Staff, London. 

SOMALILAND.— Gene lal Staff Map on Scale of 1 : 250,000 or about 4 miles to an 
inch. Sheets 68-i, 68-j, 86-b, 86-k. 1905. Price Is. 6d. each sheet. 

Topographical Section, General Staff', London. 

SOUTHERN NIGERIA AND KAMERUNS.— Map of Boundary between . 1905-6. 

Scale 1 : 100,000. lu two sheets. 

Topographical Section, General Staff, London. 

WALFISCH BAY.— General Staff Map on Scale of 1 : 1,000,000. Sheet 119. 1906. 
Price 2s. Topograjjhical Section, General Staff', London. 

NEW MAPS. 279 


NORTH AMERICA. — Stanford's New Orographical JMap of North America. Com- 
piled under the direction of H. J. Mackinder, M.A. Scale 1 : 6,013,500. In 
four sheets. 1907. Price 16s. or 20s. mounted on rollers and varnislied. 

Edward Stanford, London. 
This is the latest addition to Mr. Stanford's excellent series of Physical Wall 
Maps. The relief of the land surface is efiectively shown in shades of brown, and 
the ocean depths in shades of blue. The lettering also includes political names. 

CANADA.— Ontario, Welland Sheet, Topographic Map. Scale 1 : 63,360 or 1 inch 
to 1 mile. Department of Militia and Defence, 1907. 

TopograiJhical Section, General Staff, London. 

CANADA, GEOLOGICAL SURVEY.— Nova Scotia. Scale 1 : 63,360 or 1 inch to 1 
mile. Sheets 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 74, 75, 76, 82, 83. Robert Bell, 
D.Sc, LL.D., etc.. Acting Director of Survey. 1905. Price 10 cents each 
sheet. Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa. 


PHILIP'S HANDY VOLUME ATLAS of the World, with Statistical Notes and Index, 
by E. G. Ravenstein, F.R.G.S. Seventh edition, revised to date. 1907. 
Price 3s. 6d. George Philip and Son, Limited, London. 

The new edition of this useful and popular little atlas appears to be carefully 
revised to date. 

ATLAS OF THE WORLD'S COMMERCE.— A new series of maps with descriptive 
text and diagrams showing Products, Imports and Exports, Commercial Con- 
ditions and Economic Statistics of the Countries of the World. Compiled 
from the latest official returns at the Edinburgh Geographical Institute, and 
edited by J. G. Bartholomew, F.R.S.E. 1907. Parts 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 
22, completing the atlas. Price 6d. each part. 

George Neiones, Limited, London. 


Panama: the Isthmus and Canal. By C. H. Forbes-Li.xdsay. Illustrated. 
Crown 8vo. Pp. 384. Price $1 net. The John C. Winston Company, Phila- 
delphia, 1906. 

Southern France and Corsica : Handbook for Travellers. By Karl Baedeker. 
Fifth Edition. Pi-ice 9 marks. Leipsic, 1907. 

The Real Australia. By Alfred Buchanan. Large crown 8vo. Pp. vii + 
318. Price 6s. T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1907. 

Natives of Northern India. By W. Crooke, B.A. ("The Native Races of 
the British Empire.") Demy 8vo. Pp. xiv-f-270. Price 6s. net. Archibald 
Constable, London, 1907. 

First Ste2)s in Geography. By Alexis Everett Frye. Large 4to. Pp. viii 
+ 170. Ginn and Company, Boston, 1907. 


On the Mexican Highlands, with a Passing Glimjjse of Cuba. By William 
Seymour Edwards. Demy 8vo. Pp. 283. Price Si "50 net. Jennings and 
Graham, Cincinnati, 1906. 

Sunny Singapore : an Account of the Place and its People, vith a Shtch of the 
Results of Missionary Work. By the Rev. J. A. Bethuxe Cook. Crown 8vo. 
Price 5s. net. Pp. xiii + 158. Elliot Stock, London, 1907. 

The Future of Japan, with a Survey of Present Conditions. By AV. Petrie 
Watson. Crown 8vo. Pp. xxxi + 389. Price 10s. 6d. nd. Duckworth and 
Co., London, 1907. 

A Historical Geography of the British Colonies. Volume vi., Australasia. By 
J. D. Rogers. With Maps. Crown 8vo. Pp. xii + 440. Price Is. Qd. Claren- 
don Press, Oxford, 1907. 

The ''Queen" Neivspaper Boole of Travel: A Guide to Home and Foreign 
Resorts. Compiled by the Travel Editor (M. Hornsby, F.R.G.S.). Fourth 
year. Pp. 530. Price 2s. 6rf. Horace Cox, London, 1907. 

The Montreux-Bcrnese Oberland Railway, via the Simmenthal. Descriptive 
Notice by Alfred Ceresole. Illustrated. (Illustrated Europe Guide Books.) 
Cr. 8vo. Pp. 76. Price 1.50 /r. Art Institut, Orell Fiissli, Ziirich, 1907. 

Also the following Reports, etc. : — 

Northern Waters : Captain Roald Amundseyi's Oceanographic Observations in 
the Arctic Seas in 1901, with a Discussio7i of the Origin of the Bottom Waters of 
the Northern Seas. By Fridtjof Nansen. Christiania, 1906. 

British New Guinea. Annual Report for the Year ending 30th June 1906. 
Melbourne, 1907. 

P^mjab District Gazetteers. Volume xiii^. Lahore, 1905. 

Madras District Gazetteers. Three Volumes. Madras, 1906. 

Bengal District Gazetteers. Two Volumes. Calcutta, 1906. 

Catalogue of the War Office Library. Parti. Pp.1307. 1907. 

British Central Africa (Nyasaland) Diary, 1907, ivith Handbook on the Pro- 
tectorate compiled in the Secretary's Office from Information received from Various 
Sources. Price 3s. 6d. net. Zoraba, B.C. A., 1907. 

Annual Report of the Smithsonian Institution for the Years 1905, 1906. Two 
Volumes. Washington, 1906. 

Guide- Annuaire de Madagascar et Dep>tndances. Annees 1906-1907. Pp. 487. 
Tananarive, 1907. 

Second Report {Northern Area) on Fishery and Hydrographical Investigations 
in the North Sea and Adjacent Waters, 1904-1905. Part i.. Hydrography. 
London, 1907. 

Handbook for Fast Africa, Uganda and Zanzibar, 1907. Crown 8vo. 
Pp. 300. Price 2s. Government Printing Press, Mombasa, 1907. 

Report of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, York, 1906. 
John Murray, London, 1907. 

Madras District Gazetteers: Madura. By W. Francis. Madras, 1906. 

Survey of Tides and Currents in Canadian Waters. By W. Bell Dawson, 
C.E. Ottawa, 1907. 

Report 071 the Administration of the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh, 
1905-1906. Allahabad, 1907. 

Publishers forwarding books for review xvill greatly oblige by marking the price in 
clear figures, especially in the case of foreign books. 

Fig. 1.— Citlaltepetl or Peak of Orizaba, 18,206 feet, looking uortlnvards from camp at the cave 
13,500 feet above sea. (Drawn by G. Straton Ferrier, R.I., after sketch by Autlior.) 





By Henry M. Cadell, B.Sc, F.R.S.E. 

{With Maps and Illustrations.) 

The United States of Mexico have not yet become a hapi^y huntinf^- 
grouml for British travellers, and the man in the street, unless perhaps 
specially interested in silver mines, knows little and has few oiiportiini- 
ties of learning mnch at first hand about that very interesting country. 
Mexico is a land of good natural resources and great possibilities, and it 
is high time that our acquaintance with the natural characteristics of the 
Republic should be improved, and our geographical knowledge extended 
of its mountains, plains, and important physical features. 

With a view to the better education of other countries in this direc- 
tion, the Government of the Republic invited the tenth International 
Geological Congress to meet in Mexico City last autumn, and the invita- 
tion to attend that cosmopolitan assembly was the occasion of my visit 
to Mexico. The guests were treated with the greatest kindness and 
hospitality by the venerable President and the numerous governors and 
state officials at different parts of the Republic. Unique facilities were 
afforded of visiting places of scientific interest remote and difficult of 
access to the ordinary private traveller unacquainted with the lan»ua»e 
and manners and customs of the people. Expeditions were ort^anised 

and excellent horses — without which travel in Mexico is impossible 

were provided along with armed escorts, ensuring not only perfect safety 
but reasonable comfort and freedom from the anxiety that solitary 
travellers are liable to experience in districts more or less remote from 
civilisation and a perfectly settled government. The escorts, armed as 
they were to the teeth with rifle, sword, and revolver, may indeed have 



been sometimes necessary, but were no doubt sent partly as a compli- 
ment to the scientific strangers, like the numerous banquets and enter- 
tainments to which they were treated wherever they went. For all 
these amenities of travel it is now a pleasure no less than a duty to 
make public and thankful acknowledgment. 

The United States of Mexico, after nearly a century of more or less 
stormy independence, have now, unlike many of the neighbouring 
Spanish American republics, begun to settle down to a measure of 
political rest. The rising generation is learning that it is not only quite 
possible to thrive without the excitement of periodical revolutions, but 
that a strong and settled government is a positive advantage and worthy 
of general support. This happy discovery arises from the prolonged and 
beneficent reigQ of the strong man who sits on the throne of Mexico, for 
the Mexico of to-day is to all practical intents and purposes not a con- 
stitutional republic as w^e understand the term, but an absolute monarchy, 
and General Porfirio Diaz, although nominally its President, is in reality 
an autocrat of a pronounced type. But he is a benevolent as well as a 
capable autocrat, and his rule is well adapted to and liked by the 
great majority of his subjects. After thirty years of arduous work he 
has succeeded by military skill, political wisdom, and strength of purpose 
in overcoming the most powerful obstacles and in bringing order out of 
the chaos and misgovernment of centuries of Spanish misrule and re- 
publican strife. He has lived to reap the reward of a long and strenuous 
life in seeing the financial credit of Mexico built up from less than nil, 
and the country raised like Egypt to a condition of prosperity and 
security it has never enjoyed before. 

General Diaz celebrated his seventy-sixth birthday on the 15th of 
September last, the day before the great anniversary festival of Mexican 
Independence. The writer had the honour to be his guest in the 
National Palace in Mexico City that evening, and it was a pleasing 
spectacle to see the ovation which the venerable soldier and statesman 
received when he appeared on the balcony of the Hall of the Ambassa- 
dors, waved the national flag, and greeted the assembled multitude in 
the square below — an ovation that proved to a stranger how large a 
place he holds in the hearts of his countrymen, who, to the number of 
fifty or sixty thousand, were waiting to do him honour. 

With the establishment of a strong central government, not only 
determined but also able to put down violence, mischief to property, and 
highway robbery, and thus to make travel fairly safe in a country that 
was, until comparatively recently, infested with thieves and bands of 
dangerous outlaws, the facilities for travelling have become greatly im- 
proved. The Mexican law, which is severe against certain classes of 
evil-doers, is relentlessly carried out. Any one, for example, who is 
found placing obstacles on a railway that may cause an accident, or 
interfering with the public telegraph wires, may be executed by the 
police without a trial. Only the week before I landed in Mexico last 
August, three men were apprehended for unscrewing the fish-plates on 
the Mexican Mountain Railway near Esperanza, with the intention of 
upsetting the train at a dangerous part of the line. Happily the engine 


and the first cars crossed the weak spot in safety, and the rear part of 
the train, although upset, turned over towards the mountain and so was 
not thrown over the precipice on the other side of the line. But a 
terrible accident might easily have been produced, and the mischief- 
makers, who had been hunted down and admitted the crime, were 
dragged to the spot and shot by the police without further legal for- 
malities. By such summary means the majesty of the law has been 
maintained and a vast number of evil-doers have been eliminated, greatly 
to the advantage of the travelling public, so that now it is undoubtedly 
safer to travel in Mexico than on many railways in the enlightened 
Republic to the north, where the arm of the law is so weak that robbers 
can often evade or defy it with practical impunity. Mexico is, however, 
a vast country with an area of 767,000 square miles — as large as the 
United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Austria-Hungary combined — 
and parts of it are inhabited by wild tribes of predatory Indians who 
have never been conquered and among whom it is almost impossible to 
travel in any capacity. These remote regions, situated chiefly on the 
Pacific slope, have consequently been hardly ever explored, and very 
little humanity is shown to their troublesome inhabitants by the central 

In certain districts Mexico possesses enormous stores of mineral 
wealth, and it was mainly the glitter of its silver and gold that led to 
the original Spanish invasion of 1519 and the subsequent conquest of 
the country by Cortes and his band of dauntless adventurers. The hunt 
for precious metals is still the great incentive to exploration as well as 
the leading industry in the more remote and mountainous tracts. The 
mines are mostly worked by foreigners, and it is no secret that the large 
interest the Americans are acquiring in this direction is causing consider- 
able uneasiness among the native Mexicans and the ruling classes, who 
are beginning to descry the Uitlander looming up rather ominously for 
their future peace. The American mining explorer from the Western 
States, although in many ways quite a useful pioneer, is in many other 
ways an obnoxious neighbour to the old-world and well-mannered 
Mexican, who resents rough treatment, particularly from his own guests 
who are enjoying the benefits of his hospitality and making fortunes from 
his native soil. 

The Mexicans prefer to let outsiders not only open up their mines 
but make most of their railways, and now that a solid government is 
established, the natural resources of the Eepublic are being steadil}^ 
developed by foreign capital. There is here an excellent field for profit- 
able commercial enterprise, especially by the British, who cannot be sus- 
pected of any ulterior political designs on Mexico, and are therefore 
likely to be more acceptable concessionaires than the 'cute Yankee from 
the adjacent Republic. The friendship between our respective govern- 
ments was demonstrated last September in a pleasing way when the 
King, through his able minister, Mr. Reginald Tower, invested President 
Diaz with the order of G.C.B. The function was performed in the 
presence of the British colony in Mexico, over three hundred in number, 
and it was pleasing to observe the appreciation of the venerable President 


on receiving a signal mark of lionour from a British sovereign which has 
seldom, if ever, been conferred on the head of any American State before. 

While speaking of the progress of Mexico, it is only right to mention 
that although, mainly through the influence of her present powerful 
ruler, she has succeeded in establishing for the time being a strong and 
able government adapted to the present state and material requirements 
of the country, the social and moral condition of the people generally 
stilMeaves very much to be desired. The population of the Eepublic is 
over thirteen and a half millions, and that of the capital about four 
hundred thousand. Although education is progressing steadily, and 
wealth is accumulating fast, the magnificent streets and buildings of the 
capital do not yet include a university, while the vast mass of the 
rural population remains quite illiterate. The Peons or agricultural 
labourers on the huge haciendas (or estates) are practically in a state of 
serfdom, with no chance of bettering their hard lot or getting rid of the 
debt in which they are often kept purposely involved all their lives by 
their wealthy employers. Many of these estates are of enormous size, 
and several exceed a million acres in area. It is no uncommon sight to 
see twenty-five pairs of horses ploughing one field in the rich Valley of 
Mexico, where the farms are well cultivated and extremely profitable. 

A large part of the Aiilley is devoted to the cultivation of the Agave 
or great aloe, the extraction of whose juice, when the plant reaches 
maturity, is a most lucrative branch of agriculture. The pulque or 
liquor made from the fermented juice is the favourite national drink, and 
the pulque haciendas, on which, over many square miles, the prickly 
aloes are planted in lines of remarkable mathematical precision, produce 
a characteristic and very striking feature in the landscape. The craving 
for pulque, like that for intoxicants with us, is a source of much poverty 
and crime among the common people, and the authorities, headed by 
Senor Guillermo de Landa y Escandon, the distinguished Governor of 
the Federal District of Mexico, are endeavouring, and with marked 
success, to diminish this evil by restricting the sale of alcoholic beverages 
on working days and suppressing it entirely on half-holidays. 

Another conspicuous feature of the country is the enormous number 
and magnificence of the churches. When the Spaniards first came to 
Mexico in 1519 they found the Aztecs, who were then the ruling race, 
addicted to horrible human sacrifices and cannibalism, and they resolved, 
while bringing these pagans under the Spanish rule, to erect the Cross in 
every town, and give them the benefit of a better religion as well as a 
better government. Their aims were thus not altogether sordid, but 
after nearly four hundred years of Papal domination better results 
should be apparent now. In spite of the magnificence and number of 
the ecclesiastical edifices, the priesthood at the present day seem 
incapable of using for the greatest good the vast influence and organisa- 
tion at their disposal. The church a generation ago had so aggrandised 
itself that it came to own the best of the land, as it did in Scotland 
before the Reformation, and ruled the country for its own ends and so 
badly that the people finally rose against its tyranny, and disestablished 
it for ever. The enormous property it had unrighteously accumulated 


was appropriated by the State and sold for public purposes, and the 
monasteries and convents, which had become hotbeds of mischief and 
idleness, were abolished and turned into schools and other useful institu- 
tions. So drastic was the measure that now the priests are not even 
permitted to wear their ecclesiastical vestments in the streets, and all 
religious processions are strictly prohibited outside the churches. The 
horrible Inquisition was abolished long ago, and persecution is now 
quite at an end, perfect freedom of worship being at the same time 
accorded to all religious denominations in the Republic. 

Among other much-needed reforms carried out by President Diaz 
was the institution of the Rurales or Mounted Police force, a fine 
efficient body of men whose acquaintance we had many opportunities 
of making while travelling in the country districts. The Rurales were 
originally bandits, with which Mexico used to swarm, and the story is 
told of how Diaz summoned a large body of them to meet him, and 
then asked them frankly how much the average remuneration from their 
predatory profession might amount to. On hearing the sum he pro- 
mised, if they would give up plunder and enlist in his service, he would 
double their pay and turn their misdirected energies into a useful 
channel. This advantageous offer was accepted with alacrity by the 
great majority, who knew the ways and haunts of robbers intimately, 
and were thereupon employed to hunt down the recalcitrant minority 
and clear the land of undesirables generally. The Rurales are now the 
best force at the disposal of the Government, and the principal instru- 
ment for upholding the majesty of the law throughout the length and 
breadth of the land. It is thus evident that, from a geographical 
point of view, the Rurales deserve special notice, their services to 
travellers being of the highest importance. 

The physical geography of Mexico, full of interest as it is, has not 
yet been much studied. Mexico City, the capital, situated in the 
Federal District, extends over a flat plain surrounded by chains of old 
volcanic hills and mountains. The valley is an enclosed basin with no 
natural outlet, and is partly occupied by shallow lakes fed by streams 
from the neighbouring heights. Although the basin is enclosed, the 
water is fresh, and this is one of the interesting physical peculiarities 
to be observed in diff'erent parts of the country. The plain is part of 
the great Mexican plateau between 7000 and 8000 feet above the sea, 
and is reached by two mountain railways — the Mexican and Interoceanic 
— from the harbour of Vera Cruz on the Gulf of Mexico, which run 
with many windings from the hot coastal plain, where sugar-cane and 
bananas flourish, up to the cooler region of maize and barley. The 
mean annual temperature of Mexico City is about 61° F., with a 
maximum of 89°, and a minimum of 35°, and the rainy season is in 
summer between May and September, when in the afternoons the clouds 
gather and heavy thunder-showers are of almost daily occurrence. 

The plateau at this season is covered with bright verdure, and the 
fields are variegated with good crops and decked with flowers of lovely 
hues. After the rains cease the grass withers and the land becomes 
brown and dusty until the dry winter months have passed away. 


Texcoco, which is tlie largest of tlie lakes ou the plateau, is about 1 2 miles 
long and 8 miles wide. It was much larger in the time of Cortes and 
the Aztecs. Mexico City, or rather the site of the present city, was then 
an island approached by embanked causeways from the adjacent shores, 
but the waters of the lake, which is quite shallow, have retreated in 
consequence of vast drainage operations begun by the Spaniards and 
extended by modern engineers. The city is now (superficially) on dry 
land, and the shore of the lake is six miles away, but the subsoil remains 
full of water, so that it is impossible to construct dry cellars under the 
ground level. The soft alluvial soil makes bad foundations, and many 
handsome buildings have been badly twisted by the yielding of the 
ground as the water-level has been gradually lowered. There is in the 
city a good deal of malaria and typhus fever, and pneumonia is a 
common trouble among the thinly clad and overcrowded natives of the 
poorer class, the result being that the death-rate sometimes reaches 60 
per 1 000 in spite of the modern sanitary measures that Government has 

The highest mountains in Mexico are all volcanic, with, as a rule, 
tlie characteristic conical configuration. The first mountain the traveller 
sees as he approaches the coast is the mighty snow-ca])ped peak of 
Orizaba, to which I shall refer later, and the most striking objects in 
the landscape at Mexico City are the white crests of Popocatepetl and 
Ixtaccihuatl, which rise into the sky far above the multitudes of smaller 
volcanic cones around them. The princij'al active volcano is Colima, 
near the Pacific coast and over 12,000 feet in height. An excursion 
was organised to Colima, but I preferred to join the expedition which 
went at the same time to Jorullo, a recent volcano no longer in activity, 
whose remarkable history has been noticed in all good books of geology 
and geography since the great Baron von Humboldt made his memorable 
visit to it in 1803. 

The subject of the following pages will be the four old volcanoes, 
Nevado de Toluca, Jorullo, Orizaba, and l*o})Ocatepetl, and the order of 
their descri})tion will be that in which 1 visited them in August and 
Sejitember 1906 and not the order to which their relative geographical 
importance may entitle them. 

Nevado de Toluca. 

This mountain was visited on the way to the volcano of Jorullo, and 
the party which set out from Mexico City to see it on the 28th of 
August was a fairly cosmopolitan one. It included representatives of 
Germany (who were most numerous), France, Italy, Austria, Pussia, 
Finland, the United States of America, and Great Britain, besides several 
Mexican geologists, the number being about thirty all told. The United 
Kingdom was represented by only two geologists, Mr. Bernard Hobson 
from Manchester University, and the writer from Scotland. 

The Mexican National Eaihvay resembles all the others in the 
Republic in being a single line. Like the less important railways it is on 
the metre gauge adapted to light trains in a country of great distances, 


where the traffic is as yet comparatively small and industry only 
partially developed. Tlie line rises from the valley of Mexico, which is 
7440 feet above the sea, to the cooler plateau of the valley of Toluca 46 
miles west of the capital, and about 120U feet higher up. At the city of 
Toluca, a clean old town with a population of some 25,000, a sumptuous 
banquet was provided for the hungry geologists by Sefior Gonzales, the 
hospitable Governor of the State of Mexico, and next morning the 
expedition to the old volcano started in earnest. 

Xinantecatl or Nevado de Toluca, the fourth highest mountain of 
Mexico, rising as it does to a height of almost 15,000 feet, is a con- 
spicuous landmark in that part of the country, but scarcely reaches the 
snowline and is only white in the winter mouths. The average height 
of the valley of Toluca is, according to Mr. T. Flores, 2630 metres or 8628 
feet, so that the mountain has not quite the imposing appearance of 
other old volcanoes whose base is at a lower level. The accompanying 
figure (2), from a photo by Mr. Hobson,^ shows the view from a small 
hill close to the city, with the old parish church built in 1585 in the 
centre of the picture and several characteristic little cones protruding 
above the plain in the middle distance. 

The first part of the journey was by rail to Calimaya, a village 
eleven miles from Toluca. On alighting from the train we found drawn 
up in line a gallant company of the Rurales awaiting us. There were 
some thirty-five troopers, each with a spare horse, and having selected 
the largest and strongest I could find, I rode ofi" with the cavalcade, 
numbering some seventy horsemen and horsewomen (a few ladies having 
joined the party), besides a detachment of baggage mules and Indian 
mozos. We galloped oft' to the strains of martial music from the band 
and drummers of the town, and as we passed along the narrow little 
streets the whole population turned out and let oft' rockets and fireworks 
in profusion, which, however, we could only hear and smell in the 
bright blaze of the tropical sun that lovely morning. 

The road, or rather bridle-track, lay through fields of maize, barley, 
and aloe, on a soil of cream-coloured pumiceous ash, cut up by barrancas 
or gullies with vertical sides, which, fortunately for us, were quite dry 
although the rainy season was not yet over. As we approached the 
mountain these little canons increased in depth, and the sides, some- 
times over 20 feet high, showed fine sections of the white granular 
ash that reminded me forcibly of the gullies in the ash round Mount 
Tarawera in New Zealand, which I visited in 1895 and afterwards 
described in this Magazine. There is no frost to speak of in either 
country to cause the sides to crumble down, and the erosion of the 
barrancas is entirely caused by the torrents that periodically undermine 
their walls and keep them always vertical or even dangerously over- 
hanging. Large slices could often be seen falling in, so that care was 
necessary not to ride too near the edge either above or below the clifts 

1 This and all the other illustrations of this article are from original photographs taken 
liy the author or his companions, or from panoramic sketches made by the author of scenes 
which were incapable of adequate photographic representation. 


in such places. The base of the mounlaiu is densely clothed Avith a 
forest, which rises to a height of about 13,500 feet, and it was impos- 
sible not to be struck with the lovely Hora of the cool mountain slopes 
in this temperate island under a tropical sky. 

Three kinds of broad-leaved deciduous trees were conspicuous, tlie 
oak, alder, and a dwarf willow. The oak is a more vigorous-looking 
tree than any of the ordinary British species. It has large glossy leaves 
white and downy on the under surface. The alder closely resembled 
our common European species Alnus glutmosa. The main mass of the 
forest was, however, of Finns Montezumce, a tree like the Corsican 
(laricio) in habit but with three long strong needles in each sheath 
instead of the two which are the common characteristic of the Austrian, 
Corsican, and Scots pines of Europe. Many of the trees were 2h to 
3 feet in diameter, and the saplings showed rapid annual growths of 
3 to 4 feet. Most of the larger stems had been gashed for resin, and 
woodcutters were at work making square axe-hewn logs where the 
forest was being cleared. There was no attempt at anything like 
systematic forestry, either in clearing the old or in propagating young 
trees to replace them, and this is a subject that might well be considered 
in connection with the other Government schemes for developing the 
natural resources of the country. 

The ground under the trees was carpeted with lovely flowers of 
many hues, conspicuous among which were bunches of lavender-coloured 
lupine, and spikes of the common crimson penstemon, such as grows 
in all old-fashioned herbaceous borders in Scotland. Among many 
other flowers I did not know it was not difficult to recognise such 
old friends as the daisy, horsegowan, yarrow, corafrey, vetch, stitclnvort, 
wild geranium, red salvia, which, if not identical with, were all nearly 
related to the common European varieties. Thistles of various sorts 
were there also, and among different ferns the common bracken (Fleris 
aquilina) was plentiful, if not on this mountain, at least on others I shall 
again refer to. Like the black croAv the bracken seems to thrive every- 
where. I have seen it in the wilds of Western Australia, and other 
travellers have noticed it in remote i)arts of Africa. There was, liow- 
ever, no heather, or anything like it, with its bonnie purple bells, on any 
of these Mexican mountains. 

After a ride of ten or t^velve miles through this delightful flowery 
forest we reached the camping ground at 11,000 feet above the sea, 
where the air was perceptibly cooler and a blazing fire was a welcome 
sight. Our kind hosts and our energetic young guide, Sefior Flores of 
the Mexican Geological Institute, had built large wooden huts to shelter 
us during the night from the cold and the tropical rain that might fall 
in torrents at any time after sunset. 

Next morning, after a cold and somewhat sleepless night, the bugle 
sounded the rouse at five, and after a snack we mounted our nimble 
steeds and made for the crater. As the sun rose above the eastern 
horizon the view from the camp was truly magnificent. Gazing through 
the tall ruddy stems of the pines into the blaze of golden light beyond, 
the eye swept over a vast and variegated plain flecked with woods and 



lakes and little clouds, and bounded by ridges of purple hills, beyond 
which, in the far distance, seventy to eighty miles away, the majestic 
cone of Popocatepetl and its rugged companion Ixtaccihuatl lifted their 
snowclad summits high into the clear morning air. By nine o'clock 
the lovely vision was ended, the mantling clouds rose and swathed the 
distant mountains in their fleecy folds, keeping them entirely hidden all 
the rest of the day. 

Tow-ards 13,000 feet the pines, which at that altitude had entirely 

Fig. 4. — Lower Crater Lake, Nevado ile Toluca. 

superseded the broad-leaved trees, became smaller, and ended somewhat 
abruptly about 500 feet higher up, leaving nothing but dull green grass 
and a few flowers growing thinly on the smooth mountain side above. 
A good bridle-path winding round a shoulder with a smooth sharp 
crest of crumbling grey ash, led to the crater lakes beyond, which were 
the objective of the expedition. 

Nevado de Toluca is a volcano of Tertiary age which has not been 
active within historic or traditionary times, and no steam or vapour 
now issues from any part of it. There are two crater lakes on the 
summit, the larger of which — the Laguna Grande — is 300 metres long 



by 213 in breadth, with a maximum depth of 10 metres or 33 feet. 
The height of this lake above the sea is 4270 metres or a little over 
11 000 feet, and the highest point of the crater rim above it is 4565 
metres (=14,977 ft.), or practically 15,000 feet, according to the latest 
measurements by Sr. Flores. Nevado de Toluca holds the- fourth place 
among the great Mexican volcanic peaks, and comes next after Ixtacci- 
huatl, Popocatepetl, and Orizaba, the giant of the group. It is, how- 
ever, proper to note that none of these 7iiountains have yet been 
mathematically surveyed, and the heights are only more or less close 
approximations obtained by the thermo-barometer. Different observers 
have obtained different results with considerable variations between 
tliem, and until mathematical rather than meteorological methods of 

Fiii. 5. — Upper Crater Lake, Nevado de Toluca. 

lieight measurement are adopted, the absolute altitudes will not be 
accurately determined. 

The crater, which is elliptical in plan, is 1565 yards long by 650 
wide. The rim is gashed with irregular lips and partly buried under 
long screes of reddish crumbling ash and lava, through which rugged 
knotty spurs and knobs project at intervals. The lavas are of tlie 
hornblende-hypersthene andesitic class, and these covered by pumiceous 
tuff and breccias form the body of the cone. The main crater has in 
the centre a small lava dome rising prominently between the two little 
lakes, and this seems to have been the result of the expiring efforts of 
the volcano. 

As the party ascended towards the rim the thin air began to tell on 
tlie horses, and they, like some of their riders, showed signs of con- 
siderable fatigue. From humane feelings some of us were glad to 


dismount aud lead the tired animals over the last ridge. The noses of 
some of the riders began to bleed, and none of us felt equal to great 
exertion, so that the sight of the cami)ing-ground on the shore of the 
Laguna Grande was extremely welcome both to man and beast. The 
very heiglit of Mexican hospitality was here reached in the shape of a 
boat that was being laboriously carried up on the shoulders of a squad 
of stout Indians for our delectation on the waters of the placid lake, 
14,000 feet above the sea. 

Numerous photographs were taken of this interesting spot, two of 
which are now reproduced in Figs. 4 and 5. The ride back to Calimaya 
Station, by a more direct route than that of the previous day's ascent, 
did not occupy more than six hours, and we returned to Toluca after 
darkness had set in. 

The Volcano of Jorullo. 

From Toluca the loute lay westward through a country of cultivated 
shallow valleys and volcanic cones, covered for the most pait with 
small trees. A day was spent in Morelia, the capital of the State of 
Michoacan, 188 miles distant by rail from Toluca. A beautiful old city 
of over 30,000 inhabitants, founded in 1541, Morelia is situated in a 
characteristic strath with fields and lakes encircled by high wooded 
volcanic hills. The city, like the capital and many others in Mexico, 
was anciently supplied with water by a long aqueduct from the hill.=, 
the old Gothic arches of which form one of the many picturesque 
features of the quaint Spanish architectuie of a former age. Peiliaps 
the most Avonderful object of a geological kind that came under our 
notice at the Michoacan Museum was a lump of vesicular lava about a 
foot in diameter, from an extinct volcano, which was full of charr(d 
heads of maize of a very distinct character. This specimen, collected at 
the Hacienda de la Magdalena, 1 1 f miles from Morelia, and near the 
volcanic Pico de Quinceo, was doubly interesting, as it confirmed the 
observation that has been occasionally made in other countries, that lava 
can sometimes preserve fossils, a fact that very few geologists would be 
prepared to admit on theoretical grounds only ; and it also proved that 
maize has been cultivated by the Indians for many centuries, at a time 
when several of the volcanoes, now apparently quite extinct, were still 
in a state of activity (Fig. 6).^ 

Under the able guidance of M. Ezequiel Ordonez, sub-director of the 
Geological Institute, who here joined the party, we were conveyed by 
rail to Patzcuaro, 39 miles west of Morelia, where the hard work of the 
expedition was to begin. Patzcuaro is a clean little town with the 
usual square or plaza containing a well with shady trees and numerous 
churches and shrines. Like other villages in that remote place, it shows 
a mixture of ancient Spanish and modern scientific conveniences, includ- 

I A short .account of this specinieu, and notes of other records of plant 
remains in basalt, are to be found in the Geohnjical Maga-Jne for May 1907. The accom- 
panying figure is reproduced here by the kind permission of the editor of the Magazine. 



ing electric light derived from the waterfalls in the neighbouring moun- 
tains. The town is situated about 250 feet above the railway that skirts 
the great lake of Patzcuaro, and a mule tramway conveys passengers up 
from the station, a distance of a mile and a half. On the return journey 

Fig. 6. — Basaltic Scoria containing lieails ot Maize, preserved in the Miclioucan 
Museum, Mexico. 

the car is allowed to run down by gravitation, the muk's following it at 
their leisure. 

The Lake of Patzcuaro is seen to best advantage from Los Balcones, 
a view-point about 100 feet above the town on the volcanic hill of El 
Calvario. I visited this lovely spot on two different occasions, and had 
time to make a panoramic sketch of the magnificent scene which is repro- 
duced on a small scale on Fig. 3. The lake, although it has no out- 
let, is quite fresh and full of fish. The inhabitants of the numerous 
villages on the islands and round the shores live by fishing and agricul- 

Fig. 7.— Midday lialt at Rancho Niievo. (Photo by Dr. W. Wahl.) 

Fig. 8. — Distant view of Volcano of .loruUo. 


ture, and their fleets of square-ended dug-out canoes skimming about 
the lake add life and interest to the picture. The lake is 12^ miles long 
and not much more than 23 feet deep. It is studded with islands — the 
tops of small volcanoes like those that peep up through some parts of the 
plain of Mexico — and is surrounded by groups of great volcanic cones 
densely wooded to the crest but fringed below with a patchwork of 
cultivated fields sloping gently down to the water's edge. The surface 
of the water is 6697 feet above the sea, and some of the surrounding 
mountains rise to heights of a few thousand feet above the lake. "When 
they were in activity they were no doubt considerably higher, as the 
craters are generally more or less worn away. The whole scene must at 
that time have been one of terrific grandeur as each eruption filled the air 
with clouds of steam and ashes, and the craters vomited forth fiery floods 
of lava to choke up the river valleys and produce great lakes with the 
impounded water. 

The night was spent in the small hotel, and next morning we were up 
at 4.30, and an hour later we were all mounted and off" on our 60 miles' 
ride to Jorullo under the protection of a company of trusty Rurales to 
see that we neither did nor suffered harm on that mysterious journey. 
Some natives whom we passed asked if we were not afraid to go near 
that dread mountain, the tradition of whose terrible eruption nearly a 
century and a half ago still haunted the popular imagination. 

The first day's ride was over a hilly district, partly wooded and partly 
cultivated with maize, which thrives well on the rich volcanic soil. The 
country was not unlike some parts of the Scottish Lowlands, with grass 
parks among rounded hills, and fields in which oxen were working with 
the primitive wooden plough of the country. The roads are not much 
better than bridle tracks running across country and through the streams 
or river beds that traverse them, only the deepest of which are spanned 
by wooden bridges. Happily for us, although there were local floods at 
other places, the weather in that district had been unusually dry, so that 
the streams were all passable, and the mud, which was deep enough at 
places, was sufficiently hard to let the horses through without much 

After a ride of 12 leagues or 30 miles we reached the small town of 
Ario, where the first night was spent in the prefecture or quarters of the 
chief magistrate, a roomy old place with a small patio or central court, 
oflf which several good-sized apartments opened, in which beds had been 
placed for our night's lodging. Like Patzcuaro, the village was lit with 
electricity and could boast of an instrumental band, which assembled in 
the patio and discoursed good music all the evening, to the delight of the 
visitors, who were objects of great interest to the whole native popula- 
tion. A local poet came in after supper when the usual toasts were 
being honoured, and recited appropriate verses, which, however, being 
in Spanish, were only understood in a dim, general way by most of 
us. The sentiment, however, was duly appreciated and applauded 
by all. 

Ario, which lies directly south of Patzcuaro, is nearly 1000 feet lower 
down and on the edge of the Mexican Plateau. Its altitude is 6200 


feet, and the road is on the whole a long descent of about 3900 feet from 
Ario to the base of the lava field of JoruUo. The following morning by 
six we were all saddled in and ready for the long descent into the Tierra 
Caliente or hot country. The path was very rough, and the red volcanic 
clay bottom so slippery, that even the best riders and some of the Kurales 
had bad spills at places. 

The road followed a long, shallow valley, filled up ages ago with lava 
streams, which had rotted down into a soft, brown clay. Deep barrancas 
had been excavated by the torrents in wet weather, some of which were 
dangerously near the edge of the slippery way. The hillsides and upper 
part of the valley were covered with bushes and pines. 

After a halt for breakfast at the llancho Nuevo, a hacienda or large 
farm building 11 miles from Ario and 1600 feet lower down, the journey 
was resumed at noon (Fig. 7). The path entered a lovely pine forest with 
open glades, through which it was possible to gallop along quite com- 
fortably. At about 1500 feet above sea-level the pines ended and the 
tropical forest was entered. The path ran through a jungle of fan palms 
and mimosas, and past groves of bananas and sugar-cane. The palms 
were often entirely encircled in the ivy-like embrace of a climbing ficus, 
and covered with tufts of orchids, with which I stuffed my saddle-bags 
to cultivate under glass at home. Huge yellow bunches of a large-leaved 
kind of mistletoe hanging fi'om the spreading branches of the trees 
reminded one of far other scenes and cooler climes, while here and there 
rude straw-thatched dwellings of Indians were to be seen, the inmates of 
which showed no disposition to molest us, and were indeed to all appear- 
ance most friendly in returning our passing salutations. 

As we entered this delightful country the goal of our journey hove 
in sight. On the opposite side of the valley below us a black, flat-topped 
hill, partly covered with bush, appeared standing alone against a back- 
ground of higher mountains covered with grass and forest (Fig. 8). This 
was the famous Volcano of Jorullo, which Humboldt's description has 
made classical in the geological world. It was entirely unlike the pictures 
or descriptions I had seen, which are mostly copies of Humboldt's original 
sketch. A reproduction of this taken from his atlas is now given for 
the sake of comparison with the picture that presented itself to us a 
century afterwards (Fig. 9). Humboldt's description and those of 
several later travellers are inaccurate in several respects, and it is well 
that the results of the latest and most exact investigations should now 
be recorded for the benefit of geographers and geologists in Europe, as 
it is not likely that many at home will soon have such an opportunity, 
even if they had the will, to risk the journey to such an outlandish spot 
to make the investigation for themselves. 

Continuing our ride southwards, the lowest point was reached at the 
Hacienda La Playa, a hamlet at the north side of the Jorullo amphi- 
theatre where we were regaled with glasses of warm milk, and the 
Germans of the party found beer provided for them free by the hospit- 
able Government, for all of which kindness the tired and thirsty travellers 
were most grateful. The bottom of the valley is here about 2300 feet 
above sea-level, and nearly 5000 feet below Patzcuaro. The bed of the 

'"''"'"- ,/,„,. /'■"I"'"'-' 

Fio. 9.— Sketi_-li, Map and Section of .Tonillo, as drawn by Von Humboldt after his visit in 1803. 


valley is occupied by the San Pedro river, a muddy stream which was 
forded on the way to the camping place a few miles farther on. 

After leaving La Playa, the soil, hitherto brown, became black and 
sandy from the ashes of Jorullo that began to cover the ground and 
increased in quantity as we approached the volcano. On the left or 
east side of the river the path turned eastwards and upwards over the 
edge of the oldest of the lava streams of Jorullo. The Malpays or " bad 
land," as this rougli lava-covered ground is called, had a thin covering of 
sandy ash, on which rough grass, flowers, and scattered mimosa trees 
were growing, while the shady nooks in the rough basalt knobs were 
shaggy with maidenhair and other tropical ferns. 

This part of the road was most attractive to traverse, but after a ride 
of some thirty miles a climb of 1000 feet during the last four miles of the 
way under a tropical sun, with the thermometer at 90'^ F., was rather 
trying both to man and beast, and our horses were scarcely able to 
follow us as we toiled on foot over the old lava streams up to our night's 
quarters on the mountain side. 

I have already referred to the mineral wealth of Mexico, which is 
most abundant among the mountainous districts composed of old volcanic 
rocks, and to the inducement it off"ers to exploration in remote places. 
It so happens that copper exists in this district, and mines have been 
opened in the old volcanic plateau to the south-east of the volcano by 
the Compania de Inguaran: The comfortable house of the manager at 
Mata de Platano, about a mile south of the cone of Jorullo, had been 
kindly placed at our disposal, in the spacious verandah and rooms of 
which, after supper and a delicious bath, we were snugly housed for the 
night. A panoramic sketch giving an outline of the magnificent view 
obtained from this point is given in Fig. 10, and a photo of the cone 
of Jorullo, and our night's quarters, in Fig. 15. 

The following day the horses were too tired to go out, and we rose 
at five and proceeded to explore the volcano on foot. Under the guid- 
ance of Seuor Ezequiel Ord6uez, who had surveyed Jorullo, and acted 
as a most admirable conductor to the party, and accompanied by a 
retinue of Indian mozos to attend to our bodily wants, we were able to 
study the mountain under the most favourable conditions. 

The volcano of Jorullo lies at the east side of an amphitheatre of 
ancient volcanic hills much worn away, on the slope of which, about 
a mile south of the cone and 700 feet below the summit, the houses at 
Mata de Platano are situated. We descended the grassy side of the 
old basaltic plateau, crossed a small stream, and then began to climb 
the slope of black ashes surrounding the principal crater. The Avay led 
upwards along a dry barranca cut by torrents in the finely stratified 
black sand and lapilli overgrown with beautiful ferns, mimosas, and 
umbrageous fig-trees, with spreading limbs and stems a yard or more in 
diameter. The upper part of the ash cone has a slope of 30° to 35°, 
aiid is mostly covered with bushes and jungle, the sides being furrowed 
with deep channels. As we neared the top a thunderstorm burst over 
our heads, and it was soon abundantly evident how these steep channels 
came to be washed out. But in half an hour the clouds rolled away, 



and the sun burst through and continued to beat fiercely down on us 
all the rest of the day. 

Jorullo is quite an insignificant volcano in comparison with hundreds 
of others in Mexico, and the highest point on the crater's brink is not 
more than 4330 feet above sea-level. The top of the cone is about 
1700 feet above the lowest part of the old valley at La Playa, and 1312 
feet above the actual base of the volcano on the west side. On the east 

Fig. 11. — Tropical Vegetation on Cone of Jorullo. 

side next the edge of the old valley the cone is only 574 feet high. Its 
interest is derived, not from its size but from its liistory, as its age is 
known to a day, and it was exactly one hundred and forty-six years and 
eleven months old on the 28th of August when we climbed its side, 
the first eruption having taken place on the 28th of September 1759. 

As we emerged from the jungle on the outer slope the crater sud- 
denly appeared before us — a huge pit more than 400 feet deep, with 
rugged sides of bare red rock and scoria. The centre Avas evidently sub- 
siding as the sides were rent ])y deep fissures running concentrically round 
the cavity, each crack forming the edge of a rude bench and reminding 


one of the seats round an ancient amphitheatre. The faces of the scarps 
looked quite fresh, and Mr. Ordonez said large slices often slipped in- 
wards as the contraction progressed. The sides converged to a point 
surrounded by loose talus slopes, and on the north side a deep gash was 
conspicuous in the rim, reaching half-way down to the bottom, through 
which the last of the lava streams had overflowed and poured down the 
side of the cone. 

The bottom of the crater is, according to Mr. OrdiMlez, 489 feet 
below the highest point on the rim named the " Pico de Eiano." 
The crater is elliptical in shape, being 568 yards in length from 
N. to S. and 421 yards in breadth. Steam and pale sulphur vapour 
could be seen rising from several of the fissures, the most conspicuous of 
the fumaroles being in the lip on the north side. 

From the summit it was easy to see at a glance the relation of the 
volcano to its interesting surroundings. It has been described by 
Humboldt as rising from a plain, the surface of which swelled up at the 
first eruption like a bubble inflated from below whose roof reverberated 
with a hollow sound under a horse's hoofs. Now, it is not quite correct 
to describe the locality as a plain, as it is only a short valley between 
high mountains, in the form of a natural amphitheatre between eight 
and nine miles wide, and the extent of level ground cannot ever have 
been very great. 

Before the catastrophe of 1759 the valley was so rich and lovely 
with its fields of sugar-cane, indigo, and guava, and its groves of bananas 
and palms, that it was known to the natives as " Jorullo," or the land of 
Paradise. But many beautiful spots in that part of the world are apt 
to be dangerous habitations. In the spring and summer of 1759 
ominous rumblings of the earth were felt at Ario and over the whole 
district, while the now extinct cones Cutzarondiro were in full activity. ^ 
On the night of 28th and 29th September the natives, who had fled in 
terror to the neighbouring heights, beheld the valley over the space of 
more than a square league burst into fire before their eyes. Huge 
sheets of flames shot upwards from the earth, while incandescent stones 
were hurled to vast heights and descended in showers of fiery rain. A 
dense cloud of cinders and scoriae hovered in the air brightly lit up by 
the fires in the throat of the new-born volcano. At the same time the 
terrified spectators saw, or thought they saw, the earth swelling up 
above the ancient level of the " plain," like the surface of a convulsed sea, 
while the waters of the San Pedro river were swallowed up in the fiery 
chasm where they were dissolved into their component elements. The 
surface of the earth round the volcano became embossed with multitudes 
of miniature volcanoes or ' hornitos " which emitted incessant columns 
of smoke and steam. 

This account of the eruption given by panic-stricken eye-witnesses is 
naturally not quite a reliable statement of what actually took place. Very 
little study is now necessary to prove that the oft-repeated story of the 
swelling up of the ground in one night is entirely c myth. Mr. Ordoiiez, 

1 See Scottish Geo;/raphical Magazine, 1887, p. 146. 


who lias carefully surveyed the ground and sifted the historical evidence 
and traditions relating to the eruption, said to us that Jorullo remained 
ill violent activity for five months, and was spasmodically in eruption for 
some seventeen years afterwards. Four distinct floods of olivine basalt 
lava were poured out, the boundaries of which are quite clear and have 
been accurately mapped by him. The welling up of the first of these from 
the original fissure or vent before the cinder cones were formed, may 
easily have misled the terrified natives into believing that the surface of 
the ground had bulged up like a gigantic bubble. 

Tiie first or oldest of the lava streams was the most extensive and 
covered an area of about 3i square miles. The rough barren surfaces, 
now clad with only a scanty covering of vegetation, are known as 
" Malpays " or " bad lands," and the " hornitos " or " little ovens " that 
figure so prominently on Humboldt's sketch are now scarcely recognis- 
able. ^Ye examined several Avhich, but for the earlier descriptions, 
would probably have never been noticed. They are insignificant mounds 
of black stratified ashes or lapilli, sometimes 5 or G feet high and 4 or 
5 yards in width. They show signs of a central aperture or crack 
through which the vapour no doubt escaped, and they generally possess 
a solid or hollow cone of the underlying basalt lava round which the 
ashy layers have formed like the skins of an onion. Many of them 
are covered with mimosa trees and bushes wdiose roots find a congenial 
habitat in the laminated and porous soil. (Fig. 13.) 

The hornitos mark the spots where the steam and gases bubbled up 
through the fine ash on the earlier lava streams while they were cool- 
ing. These excrescences do not appear on the fourth or latest lava 
stream which issued from the breach on the north side of the main 
crater, and hangs over the mountain side like a long brown tongue with 
an extremely rough scoriaceous surface free of ash and almost devoid of 
vegetation. The final effort of the volcano was to pour out this lava 
stream, which appears to have welled up quietly without the explosive 
violence which attended the earlier eruptions. As it overflowed the 
crust hardened, and the still liquid stream ran on through a tunnel the 
roof of which finally collapsed, leaving a rough gully in its track. This 
is locally known as the Street of ruins or " Calle de las ruinas." Under 
some of the Mexican lava streams caves have thus originated, the roofs 
of which are still intact. At the Pyramids of Teotihuacan in the 
Mexican valley one of these, known as the Grotto de Porfirio Diaz is so 
large that it provided a banqueting hall for a party of some three 
hundred members of the Geological Congress at their visit to that 
interesting place. 

The accompanying map from the survey of Mr. Ordonez shows the 
four lava streams, the main volcano and the volcancitos or smaller cones 
adjoining it. Humboldt and the earlier travellers stated that there were 
five of these minor vents, but this is not correct, as there are only three 
volcancitos, all of which are situated along one line about two miles in 
length. The direction is nearly NNE. and SSW., and this no doubt was 
the line of a fissure that o})ened when the eruption took place. 
The Volcancito del Norte is situated about 1500 yards NNE. of the 

Fig. 12.— Volcaucito del Norte from ESE. (Photo l>y B. Hob.soi). 

Fig. 13. —Remains of a Honiito on lavatielil oi JoruUo. (Photo l.)y Dr. W. Wahl. 

Fig. 14. — Jorullo from NW. showing "Malpays,"' central cone, and volcancitos. 
(Sketcli by Autlior. ) 

Fig. If). — Cone ot .lonillo I'roni Mata de Platano. 



main crater, and the Volcancito del 8ur just a mile to the SSW., while 
the Volcancito de Enmedio, the smallest of the group, lies between Jorullo 
and the Volcancito del Sur, which it closely adjoins. All these volcan- 
citos are horse-shoe shaped, and the craters are breached on the west 
side. They rise to heights of from 180 to 394 feet above their respec- 
tive bases, the highest or northern cone being 730 feet lower than the 
crest of Jorullo. The four cones all spring from the second lava stream, 
and apparently reached the explosive stage after it was poured out. All 
of them latterly became choked up and extinct except the central vent 
of Jorullo, which survived long enough to increase its cinder cone to its 
present dimensions and vomit out two more lava streams before its 
energies finally became exhausted. (Figs. 12 and 14.) 

Two niglits were spent on the mountain, and the accompanying 

Fig. 16.— Native huts at Mata de Platano. 

sketches and photos, taken by the writer and other members of the party, 
will convey a better idea of its features than pages of description. With 
the exception of a small deer and a couple of snakes, we saw no wild 
animals on the mountain. Fig. 16 shows the type of native huts in this 
district at Mata de Platano. The return journey occupied three days, 
and we arrived back in Mexico City on 1st September M^ell pleased with 
the visit to Jorullo. 

Citlaltepetl, or the Peak of Orizaba. 

As the European visitor sails wearily over the steaming waters of the 
Gulf, the first sight of the Mexican coast as day begins to break is one 
not easily forgotten. The eye wanders over the deep blue waters towards 


a line ot low saudhills covered with scrubby vegetation most monotonous 
and unpicturesque in aspect. Far inland, away beyond a mysterious 
hazy background of high laud smothered under banks of fleecy clouds, 
the form of a huge snow-capped mountain stands out in bold relief 
against the western sky, Citlaltepetl, the Mountain of the Star, as the 
natives call it, or the Peak of Orizaba, as it is generally known to 
Europeans, can be seen 100 miles away, and when free of clouds its 
pyramidal crest is the most impressive and conspicuous landmark on the 
Gulf of Mexico. Towering as it does in solitary grandeur far above the 
high plateau of Mexico to a height approaching 19,000 feet, Citlaltepetl 
is not only the highest mountain in the republic, but almost the highest 
in North America, being surpassed in height by only two others, Mount 
M'Kinley in Alaska, and Mount Logan in the Canadian St. Elias Range. 
(Fig. 17). 

Before leaving the country I made up my mind if possible to survey it 
from the top of that lone peak, a spot on which very few Europeans and 
perhaps still fewer Mexicans have ever set foot, on account of the difficulty 
of access and atmosphere — or want of it — surrounding the snowy solitude. 
Not much information was available as to the best way to make the 
ascent, and it was necessaiy to find out the ways and means for oneself. 
Some members of the Geological Congress had been unsuccessful in the 
attempt, owing mainly to the tropical rains in August, but a few others 
who waited till September, when the weather was more propitious, 
reached the toj). Among these were Professor A. P. Coleman of Toronto 
and some Am.erican geologists, and their valuable experience was placed 
at the disposal of the party with which I arranged to go at a later date. 
This was not an excursion under Government auspices like the ride to 
Jorullo, and as none of us were sufficiently familiar with Si)anish, and 
native interpreters were not to be found, a difficulty arose at the outset. 
But this was removed when Mr. W. T. Tower of Chicago University, 
who had been studying the fauna of Mexico and knew the country well, 
kindly offered to act as our guide, interpreter, and friend. 

The other members of the party were Professor F. 1). Adams of M'Gill 
University, Montreal, Mr. R. A. Daly of the Canadian Geological Survey, 
Mr. G. 0. Smith and Mr. F. E. Wright of the U.S. Geological Survey— six 
in all, including the writer. Permission had to be obtained from the 
Laird, for Citlaltepetl is situated on an estate of more than 1000 square 
miles, one of the many vast haciendas owned by a single proprietor. 
The district is, or was until recently, a favourite haunt of robbers and 
outlaws, and it is advisable, if not absolutely necessary, to have letters 
of introduction or permission to satisfy the estate officials of the respect- 
ability and inofl"ensiveness of unknown visitors. A letter of introduction 
was also given us by the obliging officials in Mexico to the Jefe Politico 
or Chief Magistrate of the district, asking him to provide jiolice ])rotec- 
tion and an armed escort, if necessary, for three or four days on the 

Such things as hobnails in boots and alpenstocks for mountaineering 
are not known to the Mexicans, but some of the pikes used by the 
picadors in the bull-ring with sharp iron shods Avere found in an old 

Fig. 17. — Peak of Orizaba from Gulf of Mexico near Vera Cruz. 
(Sketch by Author.) 

Fig. 18.— Party preparing to descend from summit of Orizaba (18,206 feet). 


curiosity shop, and they served our more humane purposes very well, 
while Professor Koiiigsberger of Freiburg lent us an ice-axe for the ascents 
he intended to make. With these implements, ropes, goggles, and pro- 
visions, we set out from Mexico City by the train leaving for Vera Cruz 
at 7 A.M. on the 17th of September. The railway, a single line on the 
ordinary gauge, runs for the first 150 miles along the plateau, gradually 
ascending from the terminus in Mexico City, whicli is 7348 feet above 
sealevel, to the highest point at Esperanza, 8044 feet in altitude, 
where the steep descent down the edge of the plateau to Vera Cruz 
begins. We alighted at San Andres, the station before Esperanza, 7972 
feet in altitude and 137 miles from the capital. 

At San Andres a Rurale trooper was waiting, and he conducted us to 
the mule tramcar that runs across the valley to the village of Chalchi- 
comula at the foot of the mountain. The valley seemed absolutely level, 
and the surface at that place was quite flat from the railway that runs 
south-eastwards along the base of the low hills on the one side to the 
foot of the mountain slope of Citlaltepetl, three or four miles off on the 
opposite side. Now the curious physical circumstance was noticed as 
we returned three days afterwards, that the plain was not level in reality, 
but had a regular slope to the west or north-west. This was made 
abundantly clear when the tramcar to the station went off on its own 
account and ran all the way to San Andres, the mules following it at 
their leisure. There was no trace of a stream along the base of the hills 
that skirted the lower edge of the strath, which might have explained 
the gradual declivity. The valley, being of good alluvial soil, had been 
apparently levelled by water in a lake or washed flat by rain originally, 
and the only explanation that suggested itself was that the whole country 
had been tilted slightly up to the east at a recent geological period. Mr. 
Tower said he had noticed signs of this phenomenon in other valleys, 
and believed it indicated a general orogenetic movement the extent and 
nature of which has not yet been investigated. 

At Chalchicomula we found quarters in a small inn with a large 
name, " El Grand Hotel de Cieclo Veinte " (the grand hotel of the 
twentieth century), where we engaged an Indian guide, Augustin, and 
seven mozos with horses, mules, and the necessary blankets to protect us 
against cold at night, and sombreros to shelter us from the sun on the 
snow by day. Next morning at 5.30 we were up, and after the 
customary formalities of loading the animals, the company, consisting 
of six horsemen, six pack-mules, one mounted guide, and one mounted 
Rurale, trotted off soon after daybreak. 

The road led upwards through dry barrancas of yellow pumiceous 
ash with which the base of the mountain is covered on the west side, 
past the remains of ancient pyramids small in size but quite distinct in 
form, which, like the great pyramids of Teotihuacan, may some day be 
found worth exploration and restoration. The ground was well cultivated 
with barley and maize up to the base of the forest zone. At 800 feet 
above Chalchicomula the path ran into the forest, which here consisted 
of Montezuma pines with tall, straight stems two feet or more in thick- 
ness growing among lupins, penstemons, foxgloves, and other flowers 


similar to those already noted on Xevado de Toluca. As we ascended, 
a good many firs of the spruce family made their appearance, and the 
three-leaved Montezuma pines became mixed with five-leaved pines of 
the Weymouth or Strobus family. (Fig. 19.) 

At 12,000 feet the trees became thinner and the path began to wind 
about among stone-sprinkled mounds that at once recalled the moraines 
of old glaciated countries. All doubt on this point was set at rest when 
at one place a conspicuous boulder about six feet long appeared lying 
against the side of one of the mounds, and furrowed from end to end 
with magnificent glacial striae, made all the more clear by the rain that 
had come on as the afternoon advanced. Unfortunately, owing to the 
bad light it was impossible to photograph this interesting relic of the ice 
age. From this point onwards the little glen up which we rode was 
entirely covered with moraines of a very distinct sort, produced when 
the ice-cap on the mountain extended six or seven thousand feet over its 
side, or twice as far down as it does in our time. 

Citlaltepetl was in activity from 1545 to 1565, and since then there 
seems to be no record of an eruption. That the glaciers had retreated 
before the volcano became quiescent was soon made evident. At about 
13,000 feet the face of a lava stream apparently about a hundred feet 
high, and two or three miles long, was seen like a huge flat caterpillar 
creeping right down from the snowy side of the cone on to the top of 
these moraine mounds, and partly blocking up the valley between the 
main peak and the Sierra Xegra, a minor but still lofty mountain shoulder 
on its south-western side (Fig. 20). That the lava was much younger 
than the moraines was clear from the circumstance that it had a rough 
and broken surface like that of any other recent lava stream, and had 
neither been worn away by any passing glacier nor greatly disintegrated 
by the weather, which at that altitude is as severe as in other cold 
regions. It was covered by pines at least a century old, and had all the 
appearance of being a product of one of the last eiuption.«. 

The view westwards from the moraines at 1 3,000 feet was so extensive 
that we could see across the valley of I'uebla and })ast the great dark 
cone of Malinche to the snowclad crests of Popocatepetl and Ixtacci- 
huatl, a hundred miles away. Some idea of this splendid vista may be 
formed from Fig. 20, drawn from a sketch I made on the way up. 

The Sierra Xegra is the dark, bare cone of a separate volcano of great 
size which does not quite reach the snowline. It is covered with talus 
slopes of debris (Fig. 21), and is separated from the main peak of 
Orizaba by a flat saddle between two side glens. The path ran up the 
western glen, at whose water-parting the glaciers had taken their rise, 
and the lava stream had poured down half-way across the flat ground 
and solidified before reaching the opposite slope at the base of the Sierra 
Xegra. In ascending to the night's quarters we passed round the front 
of the lava flow and turned northwards along its eastern edge. 

At a height of about 13,500 feet .some distance up the face of the 
lava cliff" and close to the upper limit of trees, there is a small cave 
with a patch of level ground in front, and here we halted and kindled 
the camp fire. The thin air began to aff'ect the horses, none of which 

Fiu. 19.— la the Pine Forest on Orizaba 

(10,000 feet). 


were particularly good, long before we reached this height, and after 
a ride of fifteen miles and a climb of 5500 feet we were all glad of 
a night's rest even in such poor quarters under an old and cold lava 
stream. (Fig. ^2.) 

There are many famous caves in Mexico, by far the finest of which 
are in the great limestone deposits under the volcanic rocks. In some 
of these a whole cavalry regiment can camp comfortably. But the cave 
on Orizaba, like the grotto at Teotihuacan, is of volcanic origin and not 
produced by the dissolving away of the rock by water. It is a rough, 
irregular cavity perhaps seven yards long by three in width, but part of 
the bottom opposite the entrance is three or four feet above the lower 
story, and the roof comes down to within a couple of feet of the fioor 
at one side. This fact one of the party who slept with his head under 
it had neglected to note, and when he rose suddenly in the dark next 
morning, he received a most striking reminder of it. Although the roof 
was leaky and the floor rough the cave was a useful shelter, and we soon 
had a blazing fire to make tea and dry our soaking clothes after the rain 
ceased to fall in the evening. For six or seven good-sized travellers the 
sleeping accommodation in such a hole was rather limited. The lair I 
selected, after the shorter men had been accommodated, had the disadvan- 
tage that three drops fell continuously on it — one over my feet, one on 
my nose, and the third into my ear — whichever way I turned ; and to add 
to the comfort of the lodging, our good Indian friend Augustin, after we 
were all solidly tucked in downstairs in the first-class cabin, while the 
Rurale trooper and the six mozos bivouacked round the fire outside, 
thought fit to deposit himself in the upper or second-class compartment 
with his toes suspended only a few inches from my nose, an attitude 
probal)ly more pleasant for him than for me in the circumstances. A 
little grass had been sprinkled over the floor, but my experience, after 
sleeping on many kinds of beds in many countries, is that in the end 
and on the whole a lava bed is not to be recommended for a couch. 

After a sleepless night we were all glad to rouse our stiff' limbs at 
3.30 next morning, a couple of hours before sunrise, and jump up when- 
ever the reveille sounded. Two hours later we were saddled in, and by 
sunrise were well on the way up to' the snowline. The view north- 
wards of the crest of Citlaltepetl was quite clear and free of clouds at 
that hour, and an idea of the scene may be gained from the sketch, 
Fig. 1. Numerous photos were taken, but none of them proved quite 
satisfactory in showing both the foreground and distance with equal 
distinctness. They seemed also to diminish the height of the cone, and 
the sketch is therefore drawn on a slightly exaggerated scale to give 
efl*ect to the true angle of slope and the impression of height that was 
experienced as we made the ascent. 

From the camp to the snowline we rode over stony ground with 
tufts of grass and huge thistles, and at this height, among other plants 
of alpine facies, one with a strong resemblance to the Swiss edelweiss 
wa.s plentiful. The edges of old lava streams produced low cliff's, from 
which glossy blocks of andesitic lava had fallen and lay scattered about. 
No doubt the slope had been covered by glaciers that produced some of 



the moraines lower down, but there were no very conspicuous signs of 
ice-erosion on this part of the mountain, and no moraines were noticed. 
Unlike Popocatepetl, which, as I shall afterwards notice, is covered with 
a thick coating of ash, Orizaba seems, on this side at least, to be quite 
free of ashes and to have emitted only lava in its last eruptions. 

It was as much as the horses could do to carry us up to the snowline, 
which was reached by 7.30. The accompanying photo (Fig. 23) shows the 
foot of the snow at about 1 5,000 feet, and gives the true angle of slope 
of the upper 3500 feet of the cone, which we found by the clinometer 
to be from 35° to 42° nearly all the way up.^ Our Indian guides led us 
in a bee-line to the summit by the steepest but most direct route. At 
first we took advantage of spurs of rock projecting radially through the 

Fici. 23. — Foot of .snowline on Orizaba. 

snow for the first thousand feet or so, and these gave a good foothold 
while they lasted. The rate of ascent was a thousand feet per hour at 
first, but as we ascended the air became so thin and cold that breathing 
increased in difficulty and progress diminished accordingly. The snow 
became harder, and it was no longer possible to climb without cutting 
steps for a foothold. The foremost guide led the way with a spade and 
made a notch which the man following him deepened with the ice-axe. 
The last 1500 feet were extremely trying to the strongest of us. I have 
been across some parts of the Alps, and some of my companions had 
done mountaineering on the snows of the Rocky Mountains, but none 

1 In Felix and Lenk's BeitriiAje zur Ocohigie wnd I'dlaim/nlni/ie der Rcjndilik Mexico 
(Leipzig, 1889-1899), pp. 47-49, it is stated that towards the north the angle of inclination of 
the cone is 4.^°, and during their ascent in FeViruary 1877 from the soutli, the Mexican 
engineers Plowes, Rodriguez, and Vigil found in places slopes up to 60^ 




S pd 

J o 



of US had ever climbed so high as this and breathed an atmosphere so 
attenuated, the sun overhead beating down on us with all his tropical 
strength. We had provided against the sunstroke by wearing Mexican 
sombrero?, and against the intense reflection from the snow below us by 
using goggles, so that our appearance had something of the horrible and 
awful as the procession moved solemnly upwards. The Indians were 
clad in Zerapes or blankets, and wore sandals to prevent them slipping, 
their feet being rolled up in strips of sacking. One of them had neglected 
to protect his eyes and, poor fellow, they were like balls of fire when in 
an almost blind state he got home. Accustomed to a comparatively 

Fig. 24.— Native guide,s on summit of Orizaba (Photo by ¥. E. Wright). 

warm climate, it was marvellous how these people endured the cold and 
tramped along with practically bare feet, the snow squeezing its way 
between their sandals and their bare soles. They tramped steadily 
upwards, and it was as much as we could do to follow, as every dozen 
steps we had to sit down utterly exhausted or lean on our sticks to 
recover a little fresh energy for the next eff"ort. The other members of 
the party were all from ten to twenty years my juniors, and I for once 
wished for the old days when I was able to climb Ben Nevis in an 
hour and three-quarters, at the rate of 2600 feet per hour, but twenty 
years makes a good difference to one's mountaineering powers, and the 
air on Ben Nevis has more oxygen than that on the snows of Orizaba, 
so I had a little excuse for being the last to reach the top. To climb 


that mountain requires a sound heart and strong limbs and lungs, and 
only a few have the physical ability to reach the summit, which explains 
the reason why so few ascents of Orizaba have been, or are likely to be, 
made by white people. (Fig. 24-.)^ 

With a great effort we all got to the top about one o'clock without 
a slip, after a climb of five and a half hours. Suddenly we found our- 
selves on the brink of the great crater. It was bitterly cold and our 
moustaches were frozen solid, while the biting wind threatened to 
envelop us in a rising cloud of snow. 

The swirling clouds lifted for a short time and disclosed yawning 
beneath us an awful gulf whose bottom was shrouded in thick mist. 
The walls were of pale red andesitic lava, and the crater seemed to be 
about a quarter of a mile in diameter. I was about to creep to the 
brink for a peep over when the guides pulled me back in terror, indi- 
cating that the edge of the vertical precipice was concealed under an 
overhanging ledge of snow which nobody durst tread on and live. I 
thouglit of my happy home and my dear wife and bairns far away as I 
drew back to a safer place and turned my eyes to a different quarter. 

As we gazed eastwards the eye swept over a vast sea of fleecy clouds 
that almost smothered the whole landscape, but through the rifts the 
blue waters of the Mexican Gulf could be descried here and tliere. 
The cone of Popocatepetl, one hundred miles away to the west, was no 
longer to be seen through the rolling clouds, and indeed it was clear 
that the afternoon mists would soon envelop us also if we lingered there 
much longer. On the highest point a rude cross had been erected long 
ago by some pious soul, made of iron pipes and a wooden pole stuck 
into some blocks of ice ; but it was badly in need of repair as the accom- 
panying photo will show (Fig. 24). The altitude of the Peak of Orizaba 
has never been determined by trigonometry, and like that of the 
other high mountains in Mexico it is variouslj^ estimated by different 
authorities. For long Citlaltepetl was supposed to be lower than 
Popocatepetl, but I have been on both mountains, and without even a 
barometer I was quite satisfied that such is not the case. The aneroid 
we carried unfortunately failed to move above 17,900 feet, long before 
we reached the top. We probably climbed 500 or GOO feet, and perhaps 
more, after it became dumb, and no doubt remained in our mind that 
the summit is not far from 18,500 feet above the sea. Some authorities 
give the height at over 19,000 feet, but Mr. Flores in his account of 
Nevado de Toluca, published for the use of the Geological Congress, 
incidentally mentions 5549 metres or 18,206 feet as the correct figure 
for Orizaba, and 5450 metres or 17,881 feet for Popocatepetl. 

The descent was begun at 1.45, and as this was a more dangerous, 
although less laborious operation than the ascent, we made use of our 
ropes, and well it was that we did so as they saved us from the fatal 
consequences of some slips on the way down tlie ice-slope. The accom- 
panying snapshot (Fig. 18) shows some of the party preparing the 

J Tlie first recordeil ascent was made in May 1848 1ij' tlie North American officers 
Lieutenants Reynold and Maynard (see Felix and Lenk loc. cit.). 

Fig. 21. — Sierra Nesfra froDi foot of snowline on Orizaba. 

Fig. 22. — Author and guide Ausustiu in eave on Orizabu 



ropes for the descent. This occupied about two hours. After the 
upper 2000 feet the dangerous part of the journey was over, and we 
were able to discard the ropes and slide down the last 1000 or 1500 
feet on foot. The horses were awaiting us where we left them in the 
morning, and very glad we were to get on their backs and scramble 
down to our cave, which we reached at five o'clock, all very tired and 
hungry after the long day's work. 

Next morning, after another sleepless night in our dismal quarters, 
we rose at 4.30 and left two hours later, at sunrise, for Chalchicomula, 
which Ave reached at eleven after a ride of only four and a half hours. 
Here we parted with our faithful guide Augustin, who explained in his 
own language that for white men we had climbed very well. Mexico 
was reached in the afternoon, and for any one who may wish to follow 
our track it may be mentioned that the four days' trip, including rail- 
way fares, food, guides, horses, and all charges, cost each of us altogether 
£4, 16s., not more than 24s. per day. 


Popocatepetl, or the Smoking Mountain, although somewhat lower 
than Citlaltepetl, is much better known, and its conspicuous position 
and commanding height, overlooking as it does the whole valley of 
Mexico, as well as the traditions which have been associated with it 
since the days of the Spanish conquest, have given the volcano a world- 
wide reputation to which the higher peak cannot lay claim. In some 
ways Popocatepetl is the more interesting mountain of the two. It is 
not difficult to reach, and although it has not been recently in eruption 
it has been active in historic times, and is perhaps not yet quite on the 
retired list. 

Many accounts have been given of the ascent and pictures published 
of the majestic cone and its surrounding.«, but most of these descriptions 
are exaggerated in several particulars. A short description of the 
volcano, as it appeared to me and my companions last September, may 
be interesting to readers of the Scottish Geographical Magazine, in which 
Mexican geography generally has hitherto occupied a very small place. 

When Cortes arrived in the Valley of Mexico in 1519, Popocatepetl 
was in eruption, and the first attempt of his gallant cavaliers to reach 
the crater, under Captain Diego Ordaz, was baffled by the volumes of 
smoke and cinders that assailed them as they neared the summit. The 
exploit was, however, a great one even for those days of chivalry, and 
in commemoration of it the Emperor Charles v. allowed Ordaz to 
assume a burning mountain on his family escutcheon. 

Two years afterwards Cortes, who was not satisfied with the result, 
sent up another party under Francisco Montafio, a cavalier of determined 
resolution, in order to obtain sulphur for the manufacture of gunpowder. 
The mountain was then quiet, and the Spaniards, five in number, climbed 
to the very edge of the crater, which was found to be elliptical in 
shape and more than a league (or 2i miles) in circumference. The 
depth was from 800 to 1000 feet, and a lurid flame burned gloomily at 


the bottom sending up sulphurous steam which, condensing on the side 
of the cavity, coated tliem over with a hiyer of sulpliur. Lots were cast, 
and it fell to Montafio himself to descend in a basket into the hideous 
abyss in quest of the coveted mineral. He was lowered by his com- 
panions 400 feet down the precipitous walls, and the operation was 
repeated until he had collected sufficient sulphur for the wants of the 
army. (Prescott, Book iir. chap, viii.) 

The records of eruptions since that period are apparently not very 
complete. A. de Lapperent, in his Trait6 de GMoijie, states that, follow- 
ing a period of rest of sixteen years, there was a small eruption in 1539, 
after which the volcano seemed quite extinct. But in 1664 it again 
vomited out ashes for several days, since when it has remained 

According to Aguilera and Ordonez, the oldest lavas of Popocatepetl 
were olivine basalts. These were followed by hypersthene andesites, 
which predominate, and the latest lavas are trachytes, the last eruption 
being marked by a thick bed of ash. 

Volcanoes are usually found in the vicinity of the sea or large lakes, 
but those of Mexico supply numerous notable exceptions to this rule. 
Popocatepetl is situated 44 miles south-east of Mexico City and about 
135 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, the nearest water being the shallow 
lagoon of Chalco, more than 20 miles to the north-west. 

On the 24th September I left Mexico City with two geologists from 
Finland, Dr. Victor Hackmann and Dr. Walter Wahl, of Helsingfors 
University. The Interoceanic Railway, a single line on the metre 
gauge, on which we travelled as far as Amecameca, runs south-eastwards 
across the plain and past Lake Texcoco, a shallow sheet of water with 
an indefinite shoreline merging at the edge into shallow pools and 
partly submerged grassy meadows, on which large flocks of cattle and 
sheep were grazing. The line then turns southwards among the 
numerous little volcanic cones of the Santa Catarina group, in the 
vicinity of which isolated hills are scattered about whose configuration 
shows them to be due to explosions of ash unaccompanied by lava flows. 
The line leaves the plain, and gradually rising passes through a beautiful 
country with flat fields below the volcanic slopes on the left, and isolated 
cones covered with trees on the right. After a thirty-six miles' run we 
reached Amecameca, a small town on the plain below Popocatepetl 8570 
feet above sea-level. The railway journey only takes a couple of hours, 
and by starting early it is possible to do the trip in two days; but the 
mountain is not always clear of clouds, and so it is advisable to have a 
day or two to spare. We found comfortable quarters in the little Hotel 
Hispaniola Americana, where horses, guides, and provisions were 
obtained. As visitors are fairly common, we had none of the trouble in 
making arrangements that occurred at Chalchicomula, and it was not 
even necessary to have the protection of a Rurale, as murders are now 
comparatively rare, and the excellent rule of President Diaz has made 
the road up Popocatepetl quite safe during daylight at least. 

Leaving Ameca at 9.30 next morning the road, like that to Orizaba, 
led upwards through cultivated fields of barley and wheat with barrancas 

Fi(i. 25. — Crest of Popocatepetl IVoni Tlaiiiaeas. 

Fig. 26.— Sulphur Ranch of Tlamacas (12,987 feet). 


whose vertical sides sliowed strata of alluvium, stones, and beds of white 
pumiceous ash. The trees in tlie forest zone were at first firs of the spruce 
family with large upright cones, mixed with a considerable quantity of 
cypress and only a few pines such as I have noted elsewhere. The 
pines increased as we ascended, and 1200 feet up the forest zone the 
firs diminished until none were left, and the forest was one of pure pines 
chiefly of the Montezuma variety, with three needles in each sheath and 
short dumpy cones. I examined a large number of these and found 
that in several cases there were on the same twig tufts of two, three, 
four, and five needles, showing apparently that the botanical division, 
according to the number of needles, is not of universal application, or 
perhaps that these high-growing trees may be the remaining parents 
from which the differentiate